A week before it launches a new console in the heated game-machine war, Sega Enterprises Ltd. on Thursday reported sharp drops in sales and profits for the April-September period.
Sega posted midterm sales of 100.9 billion yen, down 20.4 percent from the same period last year, and pretax profits of 6.4 billion yen, a 47.3 percent fall. The company attributed the decline to the economic slump, peaked sales of “Puri-Kura,” the popular instant photo machines, and the separation of karaoke and several other departments into subsidiaries.
By segment, sales of arcade machines slid 37 percent to 29.2 billion yen, and those of consumer game machines dropped 22 percent to 24.4 billion yen, compared to the same period last year. Sega, which lost the 32-bit home-console war to Sony’s PlayStation, is preparing to launch a 128-bit machine, Dreamcast, next Friday.
Shunichi Nakamura, executive vice president of Sega, told a news conference Thursday that the firm will be able to ship 1 million units as scheduled by the end of March, brushing aside concerns over graphic-chip supplies for Dreamcast.
Some observers have worried that Dreamcast’s availability could be hurt by a delay in chip supplies at NEC.
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