Shares of video diversion publisher Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA)  fell after retailer GameStop (NYSE:GME) reported diseased third-quarter gain on Nov 23. GameStop batch plunged as most as 16% that day, while EA batch slid about 6%. It competence seem judicious to dump a diversion publisher’s batch after a vital diversion tradesman misses gain expectations, though it doesn’t unequivocally make most clarity due to a differences between earthy and digital distribution.

Store Photos May

Source: GameStop.

How bad was GameStop’s quarter?
Last quarter, GameStop’s income fell 3.6% annually to $2.02 billion and missed estimates by $120 million. Net income fell 11.4% to $57 million, or $0.54 per share, that missed expectations by $0.05. Same-store sales declined 1.1% annually, compared to an boost of 8.1% in a second quarter. Here’s how GameStop fared opposite a 6 categorical product categories:

Product category

YOY sales growth

% of sum revenue

New hardware



New software



Pre-owned/value-added diversion products



Game accessories



Digital games



Mobile/Consumer Electronics



Source: GameStop 3Q gain report.

At initial glance, it looks like sales of consoles and video games are descending opposite a board. However, console sales were approaching to delayed down, given a PS4 and Xbox One have both been on a marketplace for dual years. Sales of earthy program were also approaching to fall, due to a expansion of digital placement channels. GameStop’s digital games income also shouldn’t be deliberate a bellwether for a digital market, given many gamers download games directly from a PlayStation Store, Xbox One Game Store, or Steam.

Simply put, business buy consoles from GameStop, though they gradually remove reason with a tradesman as a hardware ages. These business afterwards cut GameStop out of a sales loop by shopping games by other digital placement channels. GameStop is perplexing to opposite this trend by charity some-more digital downloads and diversifying into consumer electronics, though those businesses still beget a tiny commission of a altogether revenue.

Why EA is different
Unlike GameStop, Electronic Arts has done a sincerely well-spoken transition to a digital gaming model. Last quarter
, non-GAAP finished products income (58% of sales) fell 13% to $666 million, though digital revenues (42% of sales) rose 6% annually to $480 million. Sixteen percent of those digital revenues came from full diversion downloads, 42% came from additional calm like DLCs, 17% came from subscriptions and advertising, and 25% came from mobile games.

EA warranted 74.5% of a revenues from consoles during a quarter. In further to offered digital games by a PlayStation and Xbox One Stores, it recently partnered with Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) to broach cloud-based games to TVs around a X1 set-top boxes. That partnership enables Xfinity subscribers to use a mobile device as a controller to play EA games streamed over a Internet. Last year, EA introduced EA Access, a subscription-based use that grants Xbox One gamers sum entrance to name titles. These initiatives will safeguard that digital revenues upsurge from vital bedrooms behind to EA.


EA Access. Source: EA.

On PCs, EA sells a digital games by Origin, a Steam-like DRM height which has over 50 million users. By gripping a games within this walled garden, EA maintains tighter control over pricing. It is also reportedly planning an EA Access-like subscription use for Origin. EA’s PC/browser revenues accounted for 14.4% of a sales final quarter.

EA’s sum non-GAAP revenues fell 5.7% annually final entertain to $1.15 billion, that still kick estimates by $50 million. That slack wasn’t surprising, due to banking headwinds and tough comparisons to last year, when The Sims 4 launched. But looking ahead, EA expects a clever holiday entertain interjection to a launch of Star Wars: Battlefront. For that quarter, EA expects non-GAAP EPS of $1.75 on income of $1.78 billion, that exceeds a accord guess for EPS of $1.73 on $1.75 billion in revenue.

Comparing apples to oranges
GameStop and EA run on really opposite business models: Sluggish sales of new hardware and program during GameStop doesn’t meant that sales of all games are shifting — it only means that a placement indication is changing.

This doesn’t indispensably meant that EA is an ideal investment during stream prices. EA has high expectations for a holiday quarter, though a duration could still be severe on margins due to high discounts and a assertive bundling of tip games with new consoles. However, investors shouldn’t sell EA simply since GameStop had a severe quarter.

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Leo Sun has no position in any bonds mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of a bonds mentioned. Try any of a Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools might not all reason a same opinions, though we all trust that considering a different operation of insights creates us improved investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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