Take Two Interactive’s stock is down 33% (35% earlier) to $7.15 a share.
Turns out Take Two’s exclusive deal to produce Major League Baseball games just finished and has not been renewed.
The deal is similar to the one Electronic Arts has with the NFL and the Madden franchise. CEO Ben Feder says baseball games are “very difficult” to sell properly.
And to add insult to injury, the company’s 2010 outlook is very grim.
Here’s the breakdown of Take Two’s earnings from Brendain Sinclair at GameSpot.com:
For the final quarter of its 2009 fiscal year, which ended October 31, Take-Two had forecast adjusted earnings per share of $0.30 to $0.35 on sales of $350 million to $375 million. Today the publisher lowered the earnings per share range by $0.25 and cut $25 million from its sales projections. Final numbers for the quarter are expected to be announced later this month.
Take-Two also gave investors its first outlook for the current fiscal year. For the 12 months ending October 31, 2010, the publisher expects sales of $1 billion to $1.12 billion, with an adjusted net loss per share between $0.40 and $0.60. Between $30 million and $35 million of that net loss (equal to $0.38 to $0.44 per share) will come from the company’s Major League Baseball business.