SCI upbeat despite £30m loss

Ben Parfitt
Brit publisher SCI Entertainment has posted a £30m full-year loss, whilst confirming that discussions with potential bidders for the business are on-going.

It insists that there is “no certainty” that an actual offer will be made, but it has had to disclose the fact that there has been more than one approach.

The Times recently reported that as well as Ubisoft and Time Warner, an unidentified Chinese company may also have expressed an interest.

SCI’s loss before tax was £30m for the 12 months to June 30th, compared with a profit of £8.1m a year earlier.

Sales fell 20 per cent year-on-year to £144m.

The company has also had a one-time £14.5m ‘price protection charge’ related to the transition to new gaming hardware and the “declining popularity” of Sony’s PlayStation 2 console.

SCI has also made a provision of £13.8m for the carrying value of capitalised development costs.

Whilst transition always brings its challenges, the company is upbeat and has begun the current financial year well.

There is also a huge buzz about key release Kane & Lynch, which hits retail on November 23rd and will be backed by the biggest marketing campaign in the company’s history.

“The investment in our business over the past twelve months gives us a strong product pipeline for financial year 2008 and well into 2010,” commented chief executive Jane Cavanagh.

“Our publishing business is planning 13 core game releases on over 34 SKUs in the next 12 months compared to 10 core game releases in FY07.”

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