Skip to Content

With Sims 4 release, Electronic Arts ekes out a profit

People wait in-line under "Madden NFL 15" billboard with an image of NFL player Sherman at the Electronic Arts booth during the 2014 Electronic Entertainment Expo, known as E3, in Los AngelesPeople wait in-line under "Madden NFL 15" billboard with an image of NFL player Sherman at the Electronic Arts booth during the 2014 Electronic Entertainment Expo, known as E3, in Los Angeles
People wait in-line Photograph by Jonathan Alcorn — Reuters

Electronic Arts, the maker of titles included The Sims, Madden NFL and FIFA, wowed Wall Street by reporting earnings well-above expectations. It’s not so surprising given the slew of big-name titles released in the company’s second fiscal quarter, including The Sims 4 last month. The games publisher eked out a $3 million profit compared with a $273 million loss during the same period a year earlier. Excluding certain expenses, EA said it would have earned $232 million in the third quarter, or 73 cents per share. On that basis, the company beat analyst expectations of 53 cents per share. Meanwhile, revenue for the quarter came in at $1.22 billion against estimates of $1.16 billion.

After-hours, shares of Electronic Arts (EA) gained over 2% to $38.33 a share.

What you need to know: As the numbers above show, the company is knocking expectations out of the park. And it’s thanks in large part to its big name titles. With CEO Andrew Wilson finishing up his first year, he’s pleased with the second quarter’s success. “Electronic Arts continues to put our players first, delivering new experiences, innovation and new ways to play,” he said in a statement. “It was an excellent second quarter, with strong new titles, deep player engagement in our live services and ongoing digital growth driving continued momentum.”

The big number: The company’s all about mobile, too, apparently. In fact, EA’s mobile sports games “averaged more than 40 million monthly active users in Q2,” according to the earnings release. That’s up 250% year-over-year, with titles like Madden NFL Mobile and FIFA 15 Ultimate Team Mobile leading the charge.

What you may have missed: With Gamergate capturing the media’s attention currently, EA – like almost all other video game publishers – has remained silent. There’s also been some controversy with Electronic Arts’ release of The Sims 4. There’s currently no Mac version available and there’s only a foggy timeline about a possible release date for Apple (AAPL) products.