EA CEO expects innovation ahead with new soccer, Dead Space titles coming

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Andrew Wills, CEO of Electronic Arts, said in an analyst call that he is optimistic about next year based on its user growth, live services and upcoming new titles.

EA ended its fourth financial quarter with 580 million users, thanks to growth from EA Sports FIFA, Apex Legends and The Sims. FIFA Mobile has seen an 80% increase in new players compared to a year ago. The number increased despite the EA removing Russian and Belarusian customers from its market during the quarter due to the Ukraine war.

“EA delivers profitable growth in FY22, a record year in every important measure of our business,” Wilson said in an analyst call after reporting FYQ4 earnings. “Total players, affiliation to our games and live services, net bookings and internal profits. With new players joining titles including EA Sports FIFA, Apex Legends and The Sims, and new players we welcome from our acquisitions, we’ve expanded our global player network to over 580 million unique active accounts. ”

Wills credited EA’s intellectual property, talent, and player network for its live services. Apex Legends Mobile launches this month, and new updates are coming. EA has six EA sports titles coming up and is in further development.

EA’s next titles include Need for Speed, Dead Space, Star Wars, The Sims, Skate, Bioware franchises and Lord of the Rings. The company’s two new studios in Seattle are working on new projects, Motivational Studio has an undisclosed title in development, and EA is working harder on its global studio teams.

FIFA ended October 21 as the number one.  1 Best Selling Game in the US
EA is leaving FIFA later this year.

EA has new titles like Coming Dead Space. And he announced that a new mobile game based on The Lord of the Rings was coming soon. But Wills did not mention Battlefield 2042, which fell short of expectations last fall, at all during the analyst call.

“Every year, we will continue to deliver more positive experiences,” he said.

Next year, the EA announced that its soccer title would shift to the new EA Play FC brand, as it would move away from its FIFA license, which lasted nearly 30 years. This fall FIFA Soccer title will be the last licensed EA sports game in that series. One advantage is that EA will no longer have to pay a licensing fee to FIFA after this year.

On its Fiscal 2023 title slate, EA said it would send five titles in Q1, F122 in Q2, FIFA and Madden NFL in Q2, Need for Speed ​​in Q3 and NHL and Q4 2023 (ending March 31, 2023 quarter).

Those titles include PGA Tour, Major Intellectual Property, Partner Title, Remake, and Sports Title. Chris Suh, Chief Financial Officer, said EA’s return on advertising costs has become normal after Apple’s Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA) went through the difficulties of changes, focusing on user privacy on targeted ads.

EA’s bookings for fiscal year 2022 reached 7.515 billion, up 20% from a year earlier.

“Sports are now central to people’s lives, and young audiences have more power as consumers,” Wilson said. “Gen Alpha, Gen Z and Millennials have digital origins and they are gaming-first generations. They see gaming as their # 1 choice for entertainment. The use of entertainment and sports is deeply social, with players on our network using games to stay connected with friends and express themselves.

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