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Electronic Arts Inc.
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At a Glance

Uppers

Competitive salary

Ability to work on latest video games

Downers

Many positions require extensive overtime hours

The Bottom Line

EA is an industry leading video game developer with moderate employee satisfaction. ?

About Electronic Arts Inc.

Electronic Arts (EA) puts gamers in action on the gridiron, the pitch, the battlefield, and in outer space with its most popular games. Its leading titles are Madden NFL, FIFA, and Star Wars, all of which it licenses from other companies, and its own Battlefield, Mass Effect, and The Sims. While EA generates increasing sales for games on mobile devices, it still makes most of its revenue from games played on consoles from Sony and Microsoft and on personal computers. The company is moving into competitive gaming and eSports with its Competitive Gaming Division. EA gets majority of revenue from international customers.

Operations

EA collects revenue from sales of its games on disc, digital downloads (onto several platforms), subscription fees, and in-game transactions.

Digital has become increasingly important for EA, bringing in nearly 80% of revenue. Digital revenue includes Live Services, over 50%, Mobile, more than 10%, and full game downloads, around 15%.

Live Services offers extra content for consoles, PCs, and browser games; game software licensed to third-party publishers; subscriptions; and advertising.

Mobile offers full games and extra content on mobile and tablets.

Full game downloads include revenue from digital sales on consoles and PCs.

Packaged goods account for over 20% of revenue. Packaged goods include game shrink-wrapped software sold through traditional channels such as brick-and-mortar retailers.

Perennially popular games are FIFA, Madden NFL, Star Wars, Dragon Age, Battlefield, and The Sims.

Geographic Reach

California-based EA operates development studios in North America and leases properties for R&D, sales, and administration in Europe and Asia. North America is its largest market, accounting for more than 40% of sales. International customers supply the rest.

Sales and Marketing

As EA's business becomes increasingly digital, more of its sales are generated through the internet. Such channels include Origin, the company's direct-to-consumer platform, digital downloads from third-party retailers, and mobile applications.

EA depends on two major console makers for about half of revenue. Games for Sony's PlayStation supply more than 30% of sales and games for Microsoft's Xbox account for over 15% of sales. EA has partnerships with Tencent Holdings Limited in China and Nexon Co. Ltd.

The company's marketing and sales expenses were $631 million, $702 million and $641 million for the years 2020, 2019 and 2018 respectively.

Financial Performance

Electronic Arts' revenue rose in recent years (except 2019), generally based on the timing of game releases. Net revenue for fiscal year 2020 was $5.5 billion, primarily driven by FIFA 20, FIFA 19, The Sims 4, Apex Legends and Madden NFL 20.

Net revenue for fiscal year 2020 increased $587 million, as compared to fiscal year 2019. This increase was driven by a $924 million increase in revenue primarily from Apex Legends, Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order and Anthem. This increase was partially offset by a $337 million decrease in revenue primarily from the Battlefield franchise.

Net income was $3 billion, including a one-time net tax benefit of $18 billion. Excluding the one-time tax benefit, net income would have been $1.3 billion, up 26% year-over-year.

Electronic Arts had $3.8 billion in cash at the end of fiscal 2020 compared to $4.7 billion at the end of fiscal 2019. Operations produced $1.8 billion in 2020 and investing activities used $1.4 billion, while financing activities used another $1.4 billion.

Strategy

Electronic Arts has perennial moneymakers, FIFA, its soccer series, Madden, its NFL game, and The Sims. The company's challenge is to develop new franchises that open with a bang and deliver recurring revenue.

Its recent release, Apex Legends, a free-to-play game, was the fastest-growing new game EA has released, hitting 50 million players in what the company called a short time.

EA's strategy is to create amazing games and content, powered by services, delivered to a large, global audience. The company believes that the breadth and depth of its portfolio, live services offerings, and its use of multiple business models and distribution channels provide the company with strategic advantages. These advantages include the opportunity to engage an increasing number of players across more distribution channels and geographies, and dependable sources of revenue from EA's annualized sports franchises (e.g., FIFA, Madden NFL), its console, PC and mobile catalog titles (i.e., titles that did not launch in the current fiscal year), and its live services.

Company Background

After four years with Apple, video game pioneer Trip Hawkins left in 1982, raised $5 million, and founded Electronic Arts to explore the entertainment potential of PCs. The company went public in 1989, and sales exploded the next year when EA began designing games for SEGA's Genesis video game system. Hawkins stepped down as CEO in 1991 and was replaced by president Larry Probst. (Hawkins remained chairman until 1994; he left to devote time to another game company, 3DO, which later went bankrupt.) The company bought game developer ORIGIN Systems in 1992 and began marketing its games in Japan with partner JVC. That year Sony introduced its PlayStation game system in the US.

Electronic Arts Inc.

209 Redwood Shores Pkwy
Redwood City, CA 94065-1175
Phone: 1 (650) 628-1500

Firm Stats

Employer Type: Publicly Owned
Stock Symbol: EA
Stock Exchange: , NASDAQ
EVP and CFO: Blake J. Jorgensen
Executive Chairman: Lawrence F. Probst
CEO: Andrew Wilson
Employees (This Location): 475
Employees (All Locations): 9,800

Major Office Locations

Redwood City, CA

Other Locations

Concord, CA
Los Angeles, CA
Pasadena, CA
Orlando, FL
Louisville, KY
Baton Rouge, LA
Minneapolis, MN
New York, NY
Pearl River, NY
Shanghai, China
Burnaby, Canada
Montréal, Canada
Braine-L'Alleud, Belgium