World of Warcraft might actually have some genuine competition once Star Wars: The Old Republic finally hit’s the market. At least that’s what Michael Pachter, a financial analyst at Wedbush, seems to think.
“My best guess is that they will attract 1.5 million subscribers paying around $15 a month, so they should generate around $270 million in revenue,” he said. “If LucasArts gets 35 percent and if EA incurs around 35 percent operating expense, they make 30 percent, or around $80 million per year, in profit. That’s not bad.”
These numbers should be pretty disturbing to Activision Blizzard president Bobby Kotick, who recently predicted that EA would collect almost no profit from Republic: “Lucas is going to be the principal beneficiary of the success of Star Wars,” Kotick said. “We’ve been in business with Lucas for a long time and the economics will always accrue to the benefit of Lucas, so I don’t really understand how the economics work for Electronic Arts.”
Obviously, Kotick is posturing to a certain degree. He’s put all of his eggs into the World of Warcraft basket, and isn’t interested in discussing how successful another MMO might turn out to be. But with WoW subscribers increasingly looking for another place to spend their time, The Old Republic is looking to be a genuine contender.
By Josh Engen