New Relationship Unites Two Powerhouse Entertainment Companies and Classic Brands to Create New Interactive Experiences
REDWOOD CITY, Calif. and PAWTUCKET, R.I. – August 7, 2007 – Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: ERTS) and Hasbro, Inc. (NYSE:HAS) today announced a strategic licensing agreement that will bring together two of the most powerful entertainment companies in an alliance which promises to transform the interactive family entertainment landscape. The strategic relationship grants EA the exclusive worldwide rights to create digital games based upon a huge array of Hasbro’s intellectual properties, including Monopoly, Scrabble, Yahtzee, Nerf, Tonka and Littlest Pet Shop, to name a few. Inspired by these classic board games and toys, EA will develop interactive experiences for a mass audience to play across key platforms including mobile, online, handheld, PC and consoles. The first games are scheduled to launch in calendar year 2008 (EA’s Fiscal Year 2009).
“The gaming market has never been more primed for a revolution in how families enjoy games,” said Kathy Vrabeck, President, EA Casual Entertainment Label. “Hasbro is the ideal partner to help propel this change. Their games define fun. These are games that we all love and remember from our childhoods. The combination of EA’s market leadership in the interactive space and Hasbro’s timeless franchises is a perfect partnership for today’s market. Together EA and Hasbro can create the next generation of fun for a new wave of kids and families.”
“Our toy and game brands have been family-favorites for decades, and aligning ourselves with EA will result in broadening the reach of our brands through the ‘re-imagining’ of these beloved entertainment icons in all key digital categories,” said Brian Goldner, Hasbro’s Chief Operating Officer. “Through the years, EA has proven themselves time and again as an incredibly creative company that delivers amazing content across multiple brands. We are thrilled to work with EA in bringing our brands to the next level in the digital world.”
EA veteran Chip Lange will lead the overall Hasbro business initiative as VP and General Manager. Hasbro Senior Vice President Mark Blecher will head up Hasbro’s digital gaming initiatives.
The initial term of the strategic relationship runs through December 31, 2013, and may be extended for an additional four years subject to certain conditions, including achievement of specified performance metrics. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed. In addition, EA does not expect the agreement to impact its second quarter and full year fiscal 2008 financial guidance as provided on August 1, 2007.
As part of the agreement, Hasbro will obtain certain rights to bring select EA franchises to toys and traditional games extending EA’s brand footprint, and bringing Hasbro’s expertise to EA’s interactive properties. The relationship also allows EA and Hasbro the opportunity to unlock exciting new creative opportunities and game concepts for some of Hasbro’s classic franchises.
The EA Casual Entertainment Label is focused on creating and delivering compelling casual entertainment experiences for a mass audience. Designed with simple rules and an engaging game design, these games are easy for a new player to learn but difficult to master. EA’s casual games portfolio include such titles as Boogie™ for the Wii™, Tetris® for mobile phones and the online gaming destination Pogo.com™.
About Electronic Arts
Electronic Arts Inc. (EA), headquartered in Redwood City, California, is the world’s leading interactive entertainment software company. Founded in 1982, the company develops, publishes, and distributes interactive software worldwide for video game systems, personal computers, cellular handsets and the Internet. Electronic Arts markets its products under four brand names: EA SPORTS™, EA™, EA SPORTS BIG™ and POGO™. In fiscal 2007, EA posted revenue of $3.09 billion and had 24 titles that sold more than one million copies. EA’s homepage and online game site is www.ea.com. More information about EA’s products and full text of press releases can be found on the Internet at http://info.ea.com.
Hasbro (NYSE:HAS) is a worldwide leader in children’s and family leisure time entertainment products and services, including the design, manufacture and marketing of games and toys ranging from traditional to high tech. Both internationally and in the U.S., its PLAYSKOOL, TONKA, MILTON BRADLEY, PARKER BROTHERS, TIGER and WIZARDS OF THE COAST brands and products provide the highest quality and most recognizable play experiences in the world.
Certain statements contained in this release contain "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements include statements concerning expectations for future business prospects and may be identified by the use of forward-looking words or phrases such as “think”, "anticipate," and "believe.” Such forward-looking statements are inherently subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Hasbro’s and Electronic Arts’ actual actions or results may differ materially from those expected or anticipated in forward-looking statements. Specific factors that might cause such a difference include, but are not limited to, Hasbro’s and Electronic Arts’ ability to manufacture, source and ship new and continuing products on a timely basis and the acceptance of those products by customers and consumers at prices that will be sufficient to profitably recover development, manufacturing, marketing, royalty and other costs of products; and other risks and uncertainties as may be detailed from time to time in public announcements and SEC filings made by Hasbro and/or Electronic Arts. Hasbro and Electronic Arts undertake no obligation to make any revisions to the forward-looking statements contained in this release or to update them to reflect events or circumstances occurring after the date of this release.
EA, EA SPORTS, EA SPORTS BIG, POGO and Boogie are trademarks or registered trademarks of Electronic Arts Inc. in the U.S and/or other countries. Wii is a trademark of Nintendo. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
||Posted by Jason Geyer