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Electronic Arts Inc. (EA)

  • Today, 8:48 AM
    • Sales of Star Wars consumer products could reach $5B over the first year after the December release date of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, according to some high-flying projections.
    • The mark would smash the previous movie product sales record of $2.8B set by Cars 2.
    • Disney (NYSE:DIS) turned the screws on licensing partners by working a deal for a ~20% royalty which is about double the normal rate. Hasbro (NASDAQ:HAS) is the major licensee for Star Wars toys, while a host of other companies have bits and pieces - including Jakks Pacific (NASDAQ:JAKK), Lego, Kay Jewelers (NYSE:SIG), Topps, Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA), Rubie's Costume Company, and even CoverGirl (NYSE:COTY).
    | Today, 8:48 AM | 23 Comments
  • Yesterday, 2:13 PM
    • Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) is down for a second day, -2%, after disappointing GameStop results sent major game makers lower.
    • Oppenheimer, though, is joining in with Macquarie on the opinion that worries about Star Wars: Battlefront are likely overdone.
    • “We believe the selloff is excessive, and that the title will sell strongly in the coming months," wrote analyst Sean McGowan. "We recommend investors buy on the weakness."
    • Other factors may contribute to GameStop's note that Battlefront isn't meeting its expectations, he says: More customers could be choosing to buy online rather than from physical retail, and GameStop's own plans to feature the game in its Black Friday sales could mean customers deferring purchase decisions until the weekend.
    • The firm maintains an Outperform rating on EA shares and a price target of $83; with shares currently trading at $67.64, that implies 23% upside from here.
    • Previously: EA, Activision, Take-Two lower after GameStop disappoints (Nov. 23 2015)
    • Previously: Macquarie: Despite reviews, EA's 'Star Wars' game likely to be big hit (Nov. 18 2015)
    • Previously: EA launches 'Star Wars: Battlefront' to mixed reviews (Nov. 17 2015)
    | Yesterday, 2:13 PM | 3 Comments
  • Mon, Nov. 23, 11:55 AM
    | Mon, Nov. 23, 11:55 AM | 10 Comments
  • Wed, Nov. 18, 12:13 PM
    | Wed, Nov. 18, 12:13 PM | 3 Comments
  • Tue, Nov. 17, 3:18 PM
    • It's launch day for Star Wars: Battlefront, one of the year's biggest videogame rollouts, but Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) may want to skip the earliest reviews.
    • The game is getting a 73 rating -- "mixed or average reviews" -- on Metacritic for its Xbox One version (15 critics). The PlayStation 4 version is faring a bit better with a 78 (generally favorable), from 13 critics.
    • EA shares are flat today, while rivals Activision Blizzard (ATVI +3.1%) and Take-Two (TTWO +2.4%) are much stronger.
    • Mizuho's Neil Doshi is unperturbed; many of the worst reviews were from people expecting a single-player campaign, he says, and major sites have yet to post their takes. He still agrees with EA that the company could sell 13M units by the end of March and reiterated a Buy rating and $84 target (near 24% upside implied).
    • Along with reviewers, Piper Jaffray's Michael Olson noted a dearth of content in the game as sold, but industry trends suggest that can be remedied by a year of strong downloadable content that EA could provide. Olson has an Overweight rating and an $87 price target.
    • Previously: EA +1% as Oppenheimer launches at Outperform on strong slate, margins (Nov. 12 2015)
    • Previously: Electronic Arts sinks 5% after beat-and-raise, bullish targets (Oct. 30 2015)
    • Previously: Electronic Arts +1.6% as Piper Jaffray reiterates Buy (Oct. 27 2015)
    | Tue, Nov. 17, 3:18 PM | 15 Comments
  • Thu, Nov. 12, 2:37 PM
    • With just days to its biggest game launch of the year, Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) is up 1% after Oppenheimer initiated coverage at Outperform.
    • Star Wars: Battlefront launches on Tuesday with the latest film in the series due in just over a month. And EA boosted some already-strong sales expectations for the game in the fiscal year ending in March: 13M units, up from previous forecasts of 9M-10M.
    • EA's games are "the envy of the industry," say Sean McGowan and Christopher Barnes, who have an $83 price target on the stock; that implies 16.4% upside from yesterday's close of $71.30.
    • "Rising gross margins and tight cost management have pushed operating margins to near record levels, and we expect sales growth to accelerate," they write. "A strong release slate in the coming quarters and favorable industry trends should drive profit outperformance."
    • EA shares are up 15.3% over the past three months and up just short of 75% over the past twelve.
    | Thu, Nov. 12, 2:37 PM | Comment!
  • Fri, Oct. 30, 3:18 PM
    • Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) has slipped 5% today -- despite a solid quarter for fiscal Q2 where it beat expectations and raised both full-year guidance and sales expectations for its flagship holiday release, Star Wars: Battlefront, not to mention analysts boosting price targets today. What gives?
    • For one thing, the stock was at a 52-week high yesterday and some profit takers may be taking advantage of results baked into the stock price. The stock gained 7.1% over the past month.
    • And despite holiday sales the coming quarter isn't the easiest one for owners of videogame makers, who face cannibalization from hardware sales, Cowen's Doug Creutz says: "We remain mindful that the November-January seasonal window has historically been a poor time to own the group, and do believe there is a possibility of a short-term pullback after the Star Wars launch."
    • But even he goes on to say "However, with both Battlefield 5 and Titanfall 2 likely on the docket for FY17, as well as another potential Star Wars title, we believe the company can continue its robust growth trajectory."
    • EA expects Battlefront to move 13M units in the rest of the fiscal year (until March), up from a previous forecast of 9M-10M.
    • The stock's trading now at $72.27. Mizuho raised its price target to $84, from $75, implying 16.2% upside, and MKM raised its target to $84, from $82.
    • Previously: EA -2.6% after solid fiscal Q2 beat, raised guidance (Oct. 29 2015)
    | Fri, Oct. 30, 3:18 PM | 4 Comments
  • Thu, Oct. 29, 4:13 PM
    • Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) jumped briefly but are now down 2.6% in postmarket trading following a solid beat in its fiscal second quarter during which it bumped its full-year guidance yet again.
    • Net revenues for live services including FIFA, Madden NFL and Hockey Ultimate Team are up 64% Y/Y combined. For the trailing 12 months, non-GAAP net revenue hit $4.163B (a record $2.307B in digital).
    • Expectations are high for the holiday quarter, which will feature Star Wars: Battlefront. The company raised guidance for non-GAAP net revenue of $1.775B (high of an expected $1.75B) and EPS of $1.75 vs. an expected $1.73.
    • For the fiscal year, the company sees non-GAAP net revenues of $4.5B (vs. expected $4.54B), and EPS of $3.00 (higher than an expected $2.96).
    • Conference call to come at 5 p.m. ET.
    • Press release
    | Thu, Oct. 29, 4:13 PM | 17 Comments
  • Thu, Oct. 29, 4:04 PM
    • Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA): FQ2 EPS of $0.65 beats by $0.20.
    • Revenue of $1.15B (-5.7% Y/Y) beats by $50M.
    • Shares +3.2%.
    • Press Release
    | Thu, Oct. 29, 4:04 PM | 7 Comments
  • Wed, Oct. 28, 5:35 PM
  • Tue, Oct. 27, 4:05 PM
    • Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) has picked up 1.6% today, and got close to another 52-week high, after Piper Jaffray reiterated its Buy rating ahead of the company's Thursday earnings report.
    • Analyst Mike Olson maintained an $86 price target; shares have closed at $75.27, implying 14.3% upside.
    • He's looking for "potential for upside to results driven by FIFA sales in Europe and growth of digital revenue." A tough comparison in NPD sales for September came due to FIFA results (FIFA 16 declined compared to FIFA 15 -- counting U.S. only). And NPD doesn't count titles bundled with hardware or full-game digital downloads, which presents some possible upside for FIFA Ultimate Team.
    • Guidance could see a boost: "EA may slightly raise FY16 guidance, with comps easing in 2H2016 and the launch of Star Wars: Battlefront in November," he says.
    | Tue, Oct. 27, 4:05 PM | 1 Comment
  • Tue, Oct. 20, 12:08 AM
    • Videogame sales tumbled in September, NPD Group says, falling 9% to $1.01B, with holiday promotions seemingly just around the corner.
    • Once again, both hardware and software declined, though hardware took the beating -- down 27% to $313.5M -- as many gamers may be awaiting a console price break or bundle in time for holiday shopping. Software sales fell just 3% by comparison, to $465.6M. Accessory sales rose again.
    • In new games at retail, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain (OTCPK:KNMCY) couldn't unseat either NBA 2K16 (NASDAQ:TTWO) or Madden NFL 16 (NASDAQ:EA), which finished September with a one-two punch, and settled at third place, just ahead of FIFA 16 (EA). Rounding out EA's sports-title success, NHL 16 debuted at No. 9.
    • The only single-platform exclusive to make that top 10 was Super Mario Maker (OTCPK:NTDOY), which debuted at No. 6.
    • Once again, Sony (NYSE:SNE) confirmed the PlayStation 4 was the top console, outselling the Xbox One (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Wii U. Sony's box has outsold Xbox One every month this year except April.
    • But the hardware faced a tough comp against last year's sales, buttressed by the release of Destiny (NASDAQ:ATVI), says NPD's Liam Callahan. And he notes that the consoles are trending up M/M: “All eighth generation consoles [which includes PS4, Xbox One, and Wii U] experienced double-digit growth when comparing sales on a per-week basis.”
    | Tue, Oct. 20, 12:08 AM | 5 Comments
  • Wed, Oct. 14, 9:15 PM
    • Demand is still strong among teens for the newest generation of videogame consoles, Piper Jaffray says -- and that's good news for leading game makers like Activision Blizzard (ATVI +0.4%) and Electronic Arts (EA +3.1%).
    • Uptake of the Xbox One (MSFT -0.5%) and PlayStation 4 (SNE -1.5%) consoles "is at the highest level we have seen, reinforcing our expectation for a much more rapid pace than prior-gen" consoles, says analyst Michael Olson, a "clear positive" for Activision, EA, Take-Two Interactive (TTWO +0.2%) and retailer GameStop (GME -1.1%).
    • The firm's semiannual survey found 73% of videogame-playing teens own an Xbox One or PlayStation 4, or intend to get one -- up from 70% last spring and 67% last fall. Some 39% currently own one of the newer consoles, up from 37% in the spring and 26% last fall.
    • "We believe the combination of next-gen console uptake and a robust lineup of AAA titles will lead to sustainable software growth through second-half 2015 and into 2016," Olson writes.
    • Mobile players are stable, but the number who'll pay is rising as well. Some 24% of teens who play mobile games by makers like Glu Mobile (GLUU +1.2%) and King Digital (KING -0.4%) say they spend in-game money, the survey said, up from 21% in the spring.
    | Wed, Oct. 14, 9:15 PM | 16 Comments
  • Wed, Oct. 14, 4:14 PM
    • Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) moved up this afternoon to finish up 3.1% as MKM Partners upgraded to Buy on a look at the upcoming lineup and stronger margins.
    • Analyst Eric Handler has an $82 price target; that's 16% upside from today's close.
    • Handler's got a Buy rating even after the stock's doubling over the past year. He raised his outlook after a "record turnout" of 9M players for the beta of Star Wars: Battlefront, but there's a strong development slate ahead as well: a new Battlefield from Dice, Mass Effect: Andromeda, and Titanfall 2, to add on to the Star Wars content.
    • Margin expansion "remains healthy," Handler says, and should keep growing to 71.5% from the prior 71%. He's raised EPS estimates for Q3 to $1.82, from $180, and Q4 estimates to $0.58, from $0.54.
    | Wed, Oct. 14, 4:14 PM | Comment!
  • Wed, Oct. 7, 8:14 PM
    • Good news for Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) in the Nielsen Game Rank study, as its Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 is the most anticipated multiplatform video game for the holiday season.
    • The game got a 98% rating in the Nielsen study, which measured overall anticipation for games to be released in Q4.
    • Tied for second place were Fallout 4 from Bethesda Softworks and Ubisoft's (OTCPK:UBSFY +1.8%) Assassin's Creed: Syndicate, each at 95%.
    • Eagerly awaited Star Wars: Battlefront, from Electronic Arts (EA -0.7%), was a surprising fifth place with 88% behind EA's new Need for Speed title at 92%.
    • Among console exclusives, the top rankers vary: For the Xbox One, it's Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) Halo 5: Guardians (100%). For the PS4 (NYSE:SNE), Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection (79%). For Nintendo's (OTCPK:NTDOY) Wii U, it's Yoshi's Woolly World (91%).
    | Wed, Oct. 7, 8:14 PM | 13 Comments
  • Fri, Sep. 18, 7:52 AM
    • The Nevada Gaming Commission approved a set of rules to allow a new category of games which mix skill and chance.
    • The aim of industry players is to introduce hybrid slot machines which appeal to millennials by incorporating skills such as knowledge of trivia, strategic thinking, or dexterity. Traditional slot machines haven't been popular with millennials in general.
    • Related ETFs: BJK
    | Fri, Sep. 18, 7:52 AM | 8 Comments
Company Description
Electronic Arts Inc develops, markets, publishes and distributes video game software and content that can be played by consumers on various platforms.