Bandai Namco reports 55% rise in game sales, despite the economic downturn

Bandai Namco has reported a whopping 55% year-on-year growth in video game sales for Q1 2023, despite overall economic circumstances. In the company’s latest financial quarter (April to June 2022), it reported ¥40.5 billion (AU$433 million) in home video game sales, compared to ¥26.2 billion (AU$280 million) in the previous year.

While only four new titles were noted as being released (likely referring to Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series, among others), it appears the entire Bandai Namco catalog has continued to perform strongly in the first quarter of the year. Forecasts included in the financial report indicate Bandai Namco doesn’t expect the good fortune to last – the company has flagged a potential drop in sales overall by the end of the year – but it’s a strong result, particularly given the sparse Bandai Namco releases in Q1 2023.

11.4 million units were sold across those four new titles, up from a staggering 10 million across 14 titles in the previous year.

A general look at the company’s largest IPs has revealed that Dragon Ball and Mobile Suit Gundam are propping up the majority of overall sales (this table referred to general IP, rather than only video games) with One Piece, Naruto, Kamen Rider and Ultraman also contributing to the IP sales total.

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In other parts of the business – which includes toys and amusement park rides – Bandai Namco continued to perform strongly. Both amusement machines and facilities grew significantly year-on-year, while IP sales (including toys) for franchises like Mobile Suit Gundam, Dragon Ball and One Piece also grew.

Select franchises declined in sales (Naruto, Kamen Rider), but overall Q1 2023 appears to be a major success for the company – notably so, given the declining performance of other rivals in the video game space.

Bandai Namco has attributed much of the Q1 2023 success to flexibility, and new measures ‘to adapt to changes in lifestyles and preferences of customers’ with the company leaning heavily on its home video game sales to prop up other parts of the business. The company has now rescoped its vision for the rest of the 2023 financial year, however sales are still expected to drop by the end of this period.

In the future, Bandai Namco will focus on launching a number of new titles – including Dragon Ball: The Breakers, and One Piece Odyssey – as well as diving deeper into the metaverse.

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