Electronic Arts Reports Revenue Miss, Okay Earnings

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Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) reported a first fiscal quarter adjusted EPS loss of -$0.41 and $491 million in non-GAAP revenue after markets closed this afternoon. The EPS loss was worse compared with last year’s EPS loss of -$0.37 in the same period a year ago, while revenue was down from $524 million, a drop of -6%. The results compare to the Thomson Reuters consensus estimates for an EPS loss of -$0.42 and $500.1 million in revenue.

The video game maker offered second fiscal quarter guidance of $1.05-$1.10 billion in revenue, short of the consensus estimate of $1.08 billion, and adjusted EPS guidance of $0.07-$0.12, again short of the consensus estimate of $0.14. Full-year guidance for calls for EPS of $1.05-$1.20 and full-year revenue of $4.10-$4.25 billion. Full-year guidance is again short of the current consensus estimate of $4.31 billion in revenue, but better than the consensus EPS estimate of $1.07.

The company’s CFO did a little cheerleading:

We had a solid first quarter and are reconfirming non-GAAP guidance of annual earnings per share growth of 30% at the midpoint of our guidance. The $500 million stock buyback demonstrates our confidence in EA’s future.

Electronic Arts today also announced a free-to-play option for its “Star Wars: The Old Republic” game.The free-to-play option includes access to eight storylines up to game level 50.

The company also said it would repurchase $500 million in stock.

Shares are up 1.6% in after-hours trading at $211.02, after posting a new 52-week low in regular trading today of $10.77. The current 52-week range is $10.77-$26.13. Thomson Reuters had a consensus analyst price target of $19.19 before today’s results were announced.

Paul Ausick