EA CEO Admits They Have ‘Dropped The Ball’

EA CEO Admits They Have ‘Dropped The Ball’

During his speech at the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference, EA CEO John Riccitello admitted that EA "has dropped the ball" at the start of this console generation, but noted that they have been recovering after they formulated and adopted new strategies that lead to them being "one of the fastest growing businesses in the industry today."

"Through this last transition to the PS3 era, Xbox 360, Wii - for a whole bunch of reasons that aren't worth getting into in a short answer, I think it's fair to say we dropped the ball," he admitted. "Our IP deteriorated, our costs went up, and we didn't really have an answer for the rise of digital."

"Over the last three years, we've made a dramatic number of changes, which can be described as part turnaround, part transformation. The turnaround has been cutting our title slate in half and dramatically strengthening our intellectual property portfolio. I think we have the strongest IP portfolio, by far, in the industry today."

"At the same time we have been managing costs aggressively and we have built a leading position, a broad base, in digital gaming. Whether it's mobile, strength in social networks, microtransaction-based services, game services. This past year, we recorded over $700 million in purely digital revenue streams."

Riccitellio then noted that "the core market for high definition gaming is a huge and fast-growing one" which EA will continue to focus on and leverage to create new IPs (Intellectual Properties) which would then spread to other platforms.

The EA CEO also braised the micro-transactions model which he described as "play first, pay later."