Take-Two revenue estimates indicate 2013 release for Grand Theft Auto 5
According to key analysts in the gaming industry, Take-Two Interactive's lofty revenue goals for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2013 indicate the release of Grand Theft Auto 5, Rockstar Games' highly anticipated sandbox action game.
“Full year FY13 guidance for net revenues is $1.75bn-$1.85bn,” Cowen & Company analyst Doug Creutz observed. "We believe management could not provide this level of guidance with any degree of confidence if it did not anticipate shipping Grand Theft Auto 5 during FY13."
He added: "Take-Two's announced line up of titles for FY13 was largely unchanged, including continuing to resist announcing a release date for Grand Theft Auto 5. We are modeling a ship date for Grand Theft Auto 5 in the last two weeks of March 2013."
Wedbush Morgan's Michael Pachter seems to agree, at least with the fiscal year 2013, adding: "Guidance strongly implies the release of Grand Theft Auto 5 in FY13. Although management did not provide a release date or window for GTA 5, its FY13 revenue guidance is unattainable without a huge seller from Rockstar."
"Management disclosed that the FY13 revenue mix by label is estimated to be 60 percent Rockstar Games and 40 percent 2K Games. Rockstar is expected to contribute $1.1bn, with $300m from Max Payne (including DLC) and $150m from catalogue," he explained. "The remaining $650m is simply not possible without the release of GTA 5 well before FY end.”
Pachter, however, still believes Grand Theft Auto 5 is on track for an October 23, 2012 release - especially now that BioShock Infinite has been delayed into early 2013.
Take-Two's lineup of future titles announced to date include Spec Ops: The Line, Borderlands 2, NBA 2K13, XCOM: Enemy Unknown, tons of Max Payne 3 DLC, and BioShock Infinite which was delayed until February 26, 2013.
Of course, if Creutz is correct in his estimate, a 2013 release means Grand Theft Auto 5 could again be in line to compete with BioShock Infinite. It was previously speculated that 2K Games delayed BioShock Infinite form its original October release to make room for Grand Theft Auto 5. Will both games now release in 2013?
Hopefully we find out more at E3. In April, Pachter anticipated some sort of GTA 5 announcement from Rockstar near E3. With the giant gaming conference now less than two weeks away, it shouldn't be long before we hear something (if Rockstar does indeed plan on announcing anything).