At an investor Q&A conducted earlier today, Ubisoft CEO, Yves Guillemot, revealed that, while he believes digital content will be one of the driving forces behind the games industry in the future, at the moment, it’s weighing down Ubisoft’s profits.
Guillemot points to CSI: Crime City on Facebook, with 2 million average users per month, as a digital game the company is pleased with. Additionally, Ubisoft recently launched The Settlers Online in Germany, which is a free-to-play browser game where you pay for downloading additional content and perks to speed up your progress.
Guillemot says that, in the future, The Settlers Online will be released in Russia, Turkey, China and other regions where the free-to-play model has proven to be successful in the future. Additionally, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World was the highest-selling game on the PlayStation Network in the second half of 2010.
However, while these games have been of high quality, they haven’t brought in much in terms of revenue, Guillemot revealed. He believes that the digital segment of the market will require a lot of investment before it finally starts to pay off, and that, at present, the cost of investment is higher than revenue gained in return.
Regardless, Ubisoft plan to remain committed to investing in this segment, Guillemot stated. In their next fiscal year, Ubisoft will launch a new digital initiative that they say will build upon experiences gained in the current fiscal year. The company’s next major digital game is Beyond Good & Evil HD, scheduled for release before the end of April.