In trading today, the technology sector did pretty well, closing on the up side by about 1.4%
Electronic Arts, however, took a bit of a bath in the market, closing on the down side by 1.1%, bringing the tech sector down, as a whole.
As I stated in a previous article, EA has been posting gains for a while now which can probably be attributed to investor confidence based on what seems to be a number of good strategic buys, AAA releases, and a great deal of “cutting edge” work, like their upcoming and highly anticipated MMORPG “Star Wars : The Old Republic“, which is set to release on December 20th, with an early play program for pre-order customers, which is set to begin on December 15th.
We previously reported a couple of issues, however, which could have potentially shaken investor confidence and could have been to blame for this downturn.
First among those was the cancellation of a number of unused – read UN-BOUGHT – online passes, before the consumers had a chance to get to them, leading a number of buyers to finding invalid codes in newly purchased software packages.
As we reported, this was a pretty major dick-move and certainly upset the consumer base around the world, which could have investors wondering how the world’s gamers will respond.
Another big issue occurred within the last few days, when consumers started reporting receiving emails from Walmart indicating their Star Wars : The Old Republic pre-orders had been mysteriously cancelled and that Walmart was having some form of fulfillment issue which would stop them being able to deliver the pre-orders until an unknown future date, if at all. Some consumers also reported being told that they would not be able to receive a refund for their lost or canceled pre-order.
With the release of this major title being just around the corner, this could also serve to shake investor confidence in EA and could also potentially explain this downturn for them.
I, for one, think EA will be able to recover from this in a major way, especially if the prediction of selling 3 million copies of Star Wars : The Old Republic come to pass.
This won’t sway me in the slightest, though. I’ll still be out there hopping around the galaxy, stabbing those dirty Jedi pigs with my lightsaber, come the 15th. Beware!