FIFA 14 sales: Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ:EA)’s stock closed on the rise on Monday trading. The 1.37% upsurge came after two important pieces of news:
First, Andrew Wilson, former EA Sports executive vice president and head of Origin, EA’s digital distribution service, was appointed as EA’s new CEO last week. According to Polygon, numerous sources familiar with the situation said that, in order to fill in the vacuum left by Wilson, Patrick Söderlund, currently the executive vice president of the EA Games label, will also take over as the chief of EA Sports. Also, Frank Gibeau, president of EA Labels (EA Games, EA Sports, Maxis and BioWare), will now be the head EA’s mobile division and Origin.
In an EA blog post, the new CEO stated that he will remain focused on three things: “Continued transformation for our digital future; delivering amazing games and services across platforms; and instilling a culture of execution that will drive profitable growth.”
The other catalyst that set EA’s stock on the rise is the launch of FIFA 14 in North America, before the worldwide release. The game is now available in retail stores and for download in Origin. The demo has been already played by more than 5 million people around the world, establishing a new record for an EA Sports game. This suggests that FIFA 14 could be one of the main revenue drivers for the next couple of quarters.
As the recent launch of Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. (NASDAQ:TTWO)’s Grand Theft Auto V proved, gaming is no longer solely a kid’s affair. Having surpassed the $1 billion mark in sales during its first three days at retail, it has set a high bar for the new FIFA. However, critics and fan reviews are very good, portraying an encouraging outlook for its sales.
The game will be available for PC, Xbox (Xbox 360 and Xbox One), Playstation (3 and 4), Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) devices (iPod, iPad, iPod Touch) and Android devices. This multiplatform bet, enhanced with several online gaming features also leads me to believe that sales will be strong.
Apparently, these two pieces of news have inspired confidence amongst investors, making the stock price lift. But, will the uptrend continue? And, will FIFA 14 sales and the new management team live up to expectations? We will need to wait. Either way, bets on EA are getting stronger.
Disclosure: Javier Hasse holds no position in any stocks mentioned