Running Head: ELECTRONIC ARTS IN 2007
Electronic Arts in 2007:
Can It Retain Its Global Lead in Video Game Software?
Electronic Arts (EA) is a marketer, publisher, and distributor of video games. Electronic Arts was established in 1982 by Trip Hawkins. The company was notable for promoting the designers and programmers responsible for its games. Originally, EA was a home computing game publisher. In the 1980s, the company began developing games in-house and supported consoles by the early 1990s. EA later grew via acquisition of many successful developers. By the early 2000s, EA had become one of the world's largest third-party publishers. In 2007 EA ranked 8th on the list of largest software companies in the world. In May 2008, the company reported net annual revenue of $4.02 billion in fiscal year 2008. Currently, EA's most successful products are sports games published under its EA Sports label, games based on popular movie licenses such as Harry Potter and games from long-running franchises like Need for Speed, Medal of Honor, The Sims, Battlefield and the later games in the Burnout and Command & Conquer series.
Electronic Arts development strategy is a pretty wise one because much of EA's success, both in terms of sales and with regards to its stock market valuation, is due to its strategy of platform-agnostic development and the creation of strong multi-year franchises. EA was the first publisher to release yearly updates of its sports franchises—Madden, FIFA, NHL, NBA Live, Tiger Woods, etc.—with updated player rosters and small graphical and game play tweaks. Recognizing the risk of franchise fatigue among consumers, EA announced in 2006 that it would concentrate more of its effort on creating new original intellectual property.
In October 2007, EA purchased Super Computer International, a long standing industry provider of game server hosting for development studios, who were currently developing the new PlayLinc...