All purpose Sales and Sales Rumors and Anecdotes [2017 Edition]

Discussion in 'Console Industry' started by BRiT, Jan 1, 2017.

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  1. BRiT

    BRiT (╯°□°)╯
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  2. iroboto

    iroboto Daft Funk
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    As per 2016:
    edit context
    I don't disagree but it's a case by case basis I assume. I'm unsure what could be more detrimental, shareholder panic "stock drops" for big failures or punishing the channels for profiting from sales metrics sharing.

    One perspective is that usually these numbers from these companies [NPD etc] do not provide the whole picture from what the publisher actually obtained in terms of revenue for the project. Only the publisher has full sales volumes and revenues. But these numbers could be causing panic/confusion where it could be wrongly placed; i.e.. Some people looking at total sales volume (placement) and thinking that meant higher returns... vs total revenue but having lower sales volumes ranking etc. It could be a PITA for shareholder meetings.

    If I was managing the publishing group, I probably wouldn't want my data exposed until I had full metrics with analysis and accounting to present to my shareholders; as well as any changed projections or how to reposition the product if required.
     
    #2 iroboto, Jan 1, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2017
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  3. DSoup

    DSoup meh
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    Then you can't sell through retail outlets because that's not how retail works. With a few exceptions (Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo) publishers sell stock to distributors who doing the hard work of selling and moving stock to retail channels on various terms. The publisher will know what they've shipped to distributors but can only get data on what has been sold to consumers by EPOS data from retailers which is where ChartTrack and NPD come into the equation, they bridge the gap of shipped versus sold to consumers by doing the hard work - tying into retailer's EPOS. Unless the publisher also happens to be distributor (like console manufacturers) then they don't have a direct relationship with retail. NPD and ChartTrack are in the position of power because they collect and provide the data. It's all or nothing,

    Also a somebody who holds does have a share portfolio, unless something dramatic has happened, shareholders will only get an meaningful update every quarter so weekly/monthly sales will receive no shareholder narrative because projections will be for full full/majority sales quarters.

    You also have to bear in mind that data is not complete because nobody covers the complete retail market and even if they did, they've had no insight into digital purchases, which is growing year on year.
     
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  4. iroboto

    iroboto Daft Funk
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    So then it's not really about NPD or Charttrack being out of line, or retailers; it's just about containing the information to subscribers and not letting that information get out to non subscribers.
     
  5. DSoup

    DSoup meh
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    Data aggregators could chose to not release information for free but it's good PR for them in what is generally a competitive market. Since most sales data ends up in the public domain anyway, aggregators may as well control the way the data is released and benefit from it. NPD is different because they have an effective monopoly in North America which is symptomatic of lack of any real monopoly enforcement in North America.
     
  6. iroboto

    iroboto Daft Funk
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    Insightful!
     
  7. bunge

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    Monopolies are legal under many circumstances. To be fair, I have no idea if NPD is anti-competitive.
     
  8. Silent_Buddha

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    It depends on the size of the retailer. For instance Amazon and Walmart deal directly with the publishers. I imagine Gamestop does as well. Smaller retailers do not have the negotiating power or volume to deal directly with the publishers and have to go through distributors. Hence why Walmart could often get specially censored versions of games and movies when they were far more worried about their "Family Friendly" image.

    Basically any outlet that can have a retailer specific version of pre-order bonuses, DLC, or something similar will have a 1 to 1 relationship with a publisher. Most other outlets will have to go through distributors.

    That said, bulk shipping (like container ships) will often be contracted by the publisher. But once those shipments reach port, distribution from there can in cases be taken over by the retailer (like Walmart does) which gives them greater negotiating power with publishers. While smaller retailers again will rely on 3rd party distributors to handle all those shipping minutia.

    Publishers are very interested in keeping the large (very large) retailers happy as they have, in the past, had an inordinately large influence on whether titles sold well or not.

    The thing is, as digital distribution increases it's share of how consumers purchase their games, the importance of retailers to publishes greatly diminishes. Especially as Publishers would much rather do higher margin digital distribution rather than much riskier and much lower margin physical distribution.

    Of course, there's a third party in all of this. The console hardware makers. They have a much larger vested interested in retailers as that's the only way to get their consoles out there unless they sell direct to the customers, like the Microsoft Store. But even then they want to have their consoles available at as many outlets as possible. To keep retailers interested in stocking their consoles they need to have software titles available to the retailers as well. So there may be pressure from the console makers on publishers to make certain that there is always some amount of physical distribution even if digital distribution eventually holds large majority of consumer spending on games.

    Regards,
    SB
     
    #8 Silent_Buddha, Jan 2, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2017
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  9. DSoup

    DSoup meh
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    Me neither but NPD are now so entrenched no competitor could establish itself. But what I meant was that in the US there is a market culture of competitors co-operating so they don't have to compete with each other. Competition is good for consumers but bad for companies who don't want to compete. Just look at the way utility providers magically focus on boundaries so there is little to no competition. Or the ludicrously small fines handed out to companies who breach regulations.

    It depends on volume more than anything. The larger the retail store the more products they carry and the more manufacturers/publishers are involved. It's impractical even for large retailers to have a direct relationship with actual suppliers/publishers, except in high volume or high margin cases. Bear in mind many retailers carry hundreds/thousands/tens of thousands of product categories, taking just one - video games - they do not want to have people manage their relationship with EA, Activision, Ubisoft, Konami, Take Two, SEGA, Capcom, Telltale and the dozens of other publishers. Video games, like music and movies, will almost always go into big media distributors who deal with all the publishers, records labels and movie distributors, then supply great swathes of choice to retailers.

    This doesn't impact retailers ability to include special DLC, they can secure rights to these separately and package them in before actual sale. Most of this will be done by the marketing firm, who often as not, are not the publisher.

    I'm sure somebody on the board has a friend in retail. They will be able to confirm.
     
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  10. Silent_Buddha

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    Coming from a point where I worked in retail sales for almost a decade, the larger retail chains have sales forces dedicated to just that. In many cases you'd have people whose only responsibility was negotiating deals with a limited number of publishers (games, movies, books, music, etc.). For commodity items (like bed and bath, kitchen wares, etc.) that often wasn't the case, with a small number of people handing all purchasing of a very large variety of items.

    It's one of the reason that in the late 90's early 2000's (prior to the growth of digital distribution of entertainment media) you saw the rapid death of non-chain Video Rental stores. Without the ability to negotiate favorable deals with large publishers they couldn't compete on any level. Having no choice but to go through 3rd party distributors (small shops) or generic publisher deals combined with 3rd party distributors (mid-sized retail chains) meant that they could not compete with the large chains. Large chains like Blockbuster, for example, could negotiate not only favorable prices, but they also had the power to negotiate deals such that X% (percentage determined by rental rate per unit per store) of rental videos had to be bought back by the publisher or there would be no deal. Hence rental duds that didn't rent well didn't hurt them nearly as much as it did smaller rental chains or mom and pop rental stores. And since they had that deal, they could order in a very large stock of opening day video knowing that if it didn't rent well, most of them would be bought back by the publisher.

    Regards,
    SB
     
  11. DSoup

    DSoup meh
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    And that used to be how retail was setup because everybody bought through retail, typically brick and mortar, it was a captive market. But retail has had to adapt to consumer's ever increasingly easy ability to find better prices with little effort, where consumers can buy direct at trade prices. This is why the retail landscape has changed hugely.

    Retail still has the option to approach manufacturers/publishers direct but this is a job they need to pay somebody to do and, unless they are buying in considerable quantity, they are not going to get things on as good terms, e.g. the media distributor will generally supply on a sale-or-return basis because they are setup to redistribute excess stock from Store A to Store B where demand is outstripping supply. A manufacturer/publisher isn't going to do this or will only do this on unfavourable terms, i.e. higher cost so retail is getting lower margins. As retailer you don't want to have to deal with 1,000 delivery guys, you don't want 1,000 invoices to process and 1,000 payments to make. You want to deal with as few as possible. This is the value added niche distributors have carved in retail infrastructure. It's the only reason brick and mortar retail is still a thing compared to online and trade outlets that don't have retail overhead.

    Right and you rarely see this any more. Why? See above.
     
  12. London-boy

    London-boy Shifty's daddy
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    So what are the totals after the holidays?
     
  13. Rangers

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    November NPD: PS4 1.1, XBox 1.0, 3DS ~555k
    December NPD: Not in yet
     
  14. wco81

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    Only 53.4?

    Good number for UC4.
     
  15. chris1515

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    Less sales than last year in US and bad forecast for number of PS4 Pro needed to satisfy the demand. Not enough PS4 Pro in Tiers 2 country and in Asia...

    I want to buy a PS4 Pro I can't in French part of Switzerland, out of stock since a few days after the launch...
     
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  16. Rangers

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    Year 3 is typically the best selling year for consoles... I mean if there's any traditional 5 year cycle left.

    So I guess that should have been PS4/Xbox One's best year? Who knows. Plus Scorpio/Pro muddy things, or do they?

    Playstation as always holding quite well to a 3:1 World:USA ratio. I had it at ~16 million NPD through Nov. Conservatively add another 1m in Dec, =17m.

    Of course that ratio was meant to be vs shipped. Shipped PS4 could be 56 million or something. So the ratio would be more like as high as 3.3 (lower depending on actual ship and Dec NPD), but that's still normal.

    Thing is I've lost touch with what "good" PS4 sales would be, lol. Meaning, I'm not really sure if 53.4 million is gangbusters or ordinary or what.
     
    #17 Rangers, Jan 5, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2017
  17. chris1515

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    Sony probably forecast 55 to 55,5 millions of PS4 sold through...

    Shuhei Yoshida said they underestimate the demand of PS4 Pro. Another reason could be less consoles sold in US... Better competition by Microsoft since the launch of Xbox One S and less PS4/Xbox One sold compare to 2015 in November 2016... Wait December NPD for reason of this result...
     
    #18 chris1515, Jan 5, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2017
  18. Rangers

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    On GAF they were saying Sony is going to miss their 60 million ship target FY ending March 2017? At least that seemed a decent consensus.

    I dont really know. It should be pretty close.

    USA sales have been decidedly un-amazing mostly of late (still pending Dec though), so that's probably going to hold down their worldwide numbers sooner or later.
     
  19. chris1515

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    It will be close 58 to 59 millions but they will missed it. they need to produce more PS4 Pro... Or they will overshipped...
     
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