Electronic Arts (Barely) Beats The Street

riccitiello tbi

Game developer Electronic Arts (ERTS) barely beat its lowered guidance for its third quarter, but guidance for the current quarter fell far short of Wall Street’s expectations.

EA announced non-GAAP earnings of $0.33 per share for Q3. This was the upper-bound of the reduced guidance the company issued last month, and narrowly beat analysts’ consensus forecast of $0.31.

Non-GAAP revenue for the quarter was $1.346 billion, down 23 per cent from 2008, closely in line with the $1.34 billion forecast.

Guidance was much less encouraging, however. EA is predicting earnings between $0.02 and $0.06 on revenue of $800 to $850 million for the current quarter, far short of the $0.13 on $850 million consensus.

The company blamed the economy and overall state of the gaming market for the decline. “EA is growing share in our packaged goods business and our digital businesses continue to grow rapidly,” said John Riccitiello, Chief Executive Officer. “Mass Effect 2 is the first blockbuster of 2010 and we are looking forward to the launch of Dante’s Inferno and Battlefield Bad Company 2.

The stock is down over 7% in after hours trading.

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