Take-Two lowers annual adjusted sales forecast

FILE PHOTO: NBA 2K22 and Grand Theft Auto 5 by Take-Two Interactive Software Inc are seen for sale in a store in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., February 7, 2022. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

(Reuters) -Take-Two Interactive Software Inc lowered its annual bookings forecast on Monday, a sign that it is struggling to keep gamers glued amid a weakening economy and broader slowdown in the gaming market.

Shares of the New York-based company fell nearly 2% in extended trading.

The videogame publisher's forecast comes after rival Electronic Arts Inc and Xbox maker Microsoft Corp disappointed Wall Street with their outlook, suggesting that the slump in gaming market might sustain this year.

Take-Two Chief Executive Strauss Zelnick said net bookings took a hit as "consumers shifted their holiday spending toward established blockbuster franchises and titles that were offered with pricing promotions in light of macroeconomic conditions."

He added that the trend affected the performance of some new releases.

Despite releasing to good reviews on Dec. 2, Take-Two's role-playing game "Marvel's Midnight Suns" was the 14th most downloaded title on Sony's PlayStation 5 in December, trailing even the two-year-old title "Spider-Man: Miles Morales."

Third quarter adjusted sales stood at $1.38 billion, compared to analysts' estimate of $1.46 billion, according to Refinitiv IBES data.

Take-Two said it now expects full-year adjusted sales between $5.2 billion and $5.25 billion, compared with $5.4 billion to $5.5 billion forecast previously. Analysts expected a figure of $5.39 billion, according to Refinitiv data.

(Reporting by Tiyashi Datta in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)

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