Today – January 16th, 2014 – was a black day in Nottingham. Games Workshop released their half-year financial report, listing their performance as a business for the six months leading up to December 1st, 2013.
Across the world, sales, revenues and profits have plummeted – at about 12% on average. Stock Markets immediately punished the poor results as GW shares drop of over 24%.
#1 – Games Workshop January 2014 Half-Year Report
Games Workshop has been in an odd spot for a while now. It’s hardly news that blogs, forums and customers everywhere have argued that Games Workshop’s practice of constant price-hikes, poorly written rules, heavy-handed legal disputes and a host of other things are all, at the end of the day, bad business for Games Workshop as a business in the long run.
Not just the long run, it appears.
Today, Games Workshop released their half-year financial statement for the six months leading up to December 1st, 2013 (that is, roughly from the Eldar Codex over Apocalypse and Space Marines, up to the Dark Elves overhaul). Compared to the same six months in the year before (which, admittedly, included the release of Warhammer 40K 6th Edition), the results are devastating.
Overall, Games Workshop seem to dropped about 12% worth of sales (so probably more than that in miniatures, given higher prices, more books, etc..). The problem appears to be spread evenly across all regions. Europe, North America, Australia, etc…, as well as GW’s UK home market, all felt the squeeze.
#2 – The Shareholders Feel It Now
If there is (possibly) one “good” thing about the affair, it’s the fact that customers are no longer the only ones feeling the pain. Games Workshop’s shareholders aren’t happy. Games Workshop’s stocks dropped nearly 24% today. The company is worth ¼ less than it was yesterday.
It is as official as it gets, I suppose, the giant of the miniature wargaming industry is gravely ill.
I really, really, really, really hope that somebody at Games Workshop will be drawing the right conclusions. To save Games Workshop, Games Workshop will have to make better games.
The fire (?) sale of odd products over Christmas, Dataslates-pushing-Riptides-plus-Escalation feels, with hindsight, a bit like desperation. The temptation will be there to do something crazy/stupid in the next few months (i.e. before June 1st, 2014?) to get the annual results back on track.
I hope Games Workshop will be able to resist that particular temptation.
#3 – The Endgame?
What do you think about the bleak state of the company?
Well deserved? Unwarranted? Overdue?
What should, in your opinion, Games Workshop due to get back to success?
Let me know what you think and leave a comment!