[AOC] CEO Dumps Stock, Market Dumps it too

FrogdiceFrogdice ClubPA
edited August 2008 in MMO Extravaganza
This is absolutely brutal.

sitewhore goodbye! - Munkus
In a move that appears to signal a bleak future for Age of Conan (and perhaps Anarchy Online as well), Trond Aas Anderson, the CEO of Funcom N.V., recently sold 400,000 shares of stock in the company.

...

The stock price of Funcom N.V has been in free fall lately. As of August 22, 2008 it closed at $13.60 per share. This is down from $55.50 in late May (just after the release of Age of Conan).

Frogdice on

Posts

  • KurnDerakKurnDerak Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Wow, shares were down to about $13 from $55 in May. That is about a 75% decrease in about 4 months. While coming out at 800,000+ subscribers is pretty impressive for an MMO, losing half of them almost as fast is quite the opposite. I have very little faith in FunComs future.

    KurnDerak on
  • Dirty DrawersDirty Drawers Registered User
    edited August 2008
    I'm not surprised. AOC showed a lot of promise, but it still hasn't given anything to not just compete against WoW, but to grab customers that aren't playing any MMO's. I bought AOC to play with my brother, and played it twice then cancelled. I hope they can stay alive and make the game more fun, while keeping an adult theme.

    Dirty Drawers on
    Fools shall not be pitied.
  • CadeCade Eppur si muove.Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Old news, this has been posted in the AoC thread a good week or two back.

    BTW they're prepping the first AoC expansion so don't expect them to be gone yet.

    Cade on
  • EchoEcho Moderator mod
    edited August 2008
    Cade wrote: »
    BTW they're prepping the first AoC expansion so don't expect them to be gone yet.

    Wouldn't be the first expansion to get canceled.

    Echo on
    Echo wrote: »
    Let they who have not posted about their balls in the wrong thread cast the first stone.
  • CadeCade Eppur si muove.Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Echo wrote: »
    Cade wrote: »
    BTW they're prepping the first AoC expansion so don't expect them to be gone yet.

    Wouldn't be the first expansion to get canceled.

    More than true enough.

    Judging from things they're hoping the 360 version helps out a lot since the world was designed to work with console limitations.

    Cade on
  • KurnDerakKurnDerak Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Cade wrote: »
    Echo wrote: »
    Cade wrote: »
    BTW they're prepping the first AoC expansion so don't expect them to be gone yet.

    Wouldn't be the first expansion to get canceled.

    More than true enough.

    Judging from things they're hoping the 360 version helps out a lot since the world was designed to work with console limitations.

    That's assuming that they can A) make it to a console release and B) enough people don't get scared away from it by all the people who played it on PC.

    KurnDerak on
  • FrogdiceFrogdice ClubPA
    edited August 2008
    Cade wrote: »
    BTW they're prepping the first AoC expansion so don't expect them to be gone yet.

    That news released reeked of vaporware. They know that come September they are about to lose all of their PvPers to WAR.

    Frogdice on
  • SmashismSmashism Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Frogdice wrote: »
    Cade wrote: »
    BTW they're prepping the first AoC expansion so don't expect them to be gone yet.

    That news released reeked of vaporware. They know that some September they are about to lose all of their PvPers to WAR.

    At least they'll still have all the PVE'ers.
    Hahaha...
    hahaha.....
    ahahhahahahahhaa.

    Cool, this is sitting right next to my copy of auto assault.

    Smashism on
  • ZzuluZzulu Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I'm sad to see all this darkness fall over AoC

    I was really looking forward to a fantasy MMO with a more realistic and brutal tone. It's a god damn shame, really.

    Zzulu on
    t5qfc9.jpg
  • SandersSanders Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Zzulu wrote: »
    I'm sad to see all this darkness fall over AoC

    I was really looking forward to a fantasy MMO with a more realistic and brutal tone. It's a god damn shame, really.

    I wantd to see AoC do good, but age of conan deserves every thing that happens to it.

    I was just going through the goon forum logs and looking at all the hilarious posts of things funcom did. It is a goldmine.

    Sanders on
  • FrogdiceFrogdice ClubPA
    edited August 2008
    Smashism wrote: »
    Cool, this is sitting right next to my copy of auto assault.

    And Earth and Beyond?

    And Sims Online?

    And Hellgate: London?

    And Asheron's Call 2?

    At least EA and Turbine won't have to be lonely in the epic failure MMO department any longer.

    Frogdice on
  • ZekZek Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Wow that's pretty ugly, I know AoC fell short of expectations but I didn't really expect Funcom to be in trouble over it. I have heard they went pretty far into the red during development though.

    Zek on
  • ShabootyShabooty Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Nothing better happen to funcom, I need more Dreamfall.

    Shabooty on
  • FrogdiceFrogdice ClubPA
    edited August 2008
    Zek wrote: »
    Wow that's pretty ugly, I know AoC fell short of expectations but I didn't really expect Funcom to be in trouble over it. I have heard they went pretty far into the red during development though.

    Yeah. Conservative estimates put their development costs at around $50 million.

    If they keep hemorrhaging users at this rate, AoC will be their absolute financial ruin. I can't believe they'd bet the farm like this and then do such a titanically bad job.

    The amazing thing is that beta testers were telling them about all these design problems 6 months before release. They didn't have to fail like this.

    Frogdice on
  • kaliyamakaliyama Left to find less-moderated fora Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Wait. If they spent 50 million on the game, and they have 800,000 people buying retail, plus 3-6 months of subscriptions, it seems like they'll at least break even on the whole thing.

    kaliyama on
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  • JoeslopJoeslop Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    kaliyama wrote: »
    Wait. If they spent 50 million on the game, and they have 800,000 people buying retail, plus 3-6 months of subscriptions, it seems like they'll at least break even on the whole thing.

    They still have to pay all their employees, their bills, maintain the servers, run the website and all the costs involved there.

    It's not just "400,000 people x $15 a month = We have tons of free money".

    Joeslop on
  • The Dude With HerpesThe Dude With Herpes Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Joeslop wrote: »
    kaliyama wrote: »
    Wait. If they spent 50 million on the game, and they have 800,000 people buying retail, plus 3-6 months of subscriptions, it seems like they'll at least break even on the whole thing.

    They still have to pay all their employees, their bills, maintain the servers, run the website and all the costs involved there.

    It's not just "400,000 people x $15 a month = We have tons of free money".

    True, but they most certainly don't have 6-12 million dollars of overhead on a monthly basis.

    I think there's just a lot of jumping to conclusions here. It's fairly common for CEO's and other executives to sell of large chunks of their stock. In many corporations stocks are a large portion of a high executives pay; and while theoretically this allows for much higher wages at a much lower tax rate (since you're not getting actual cash), it also comes with the risk of your companies stock going down the tubes, or at least dropping from what they once where. Many execs are willing to gamble with this however since they tend to be wealthy enough to begin with that they don't need that liquid of an income.

    AoC isn't going anywhere, it's doing well despite the doom and gloom some people are trumpeting (ironically the same thing has been happening for WoW and every other moderately successful MMO for ever), and funcom also isn't going anywhere.

    EDIT: that is to say people have been constantly declaring the "end" of WoW and every single other MMO since pretty much their inceptions; they play it, don't like it and the obvious conclusion is that it will fail and the company will go under.

    EDIT2: Also the current stock price compared to the price right before the companies biggest launch is fairly irrelevant. Yes, it's easy to throw those numbers up and so "ZOMG look they've plummeted"; but a more accurate depiction of their current status would be to look at their average stock prices over the years prior to the release of AoC. The current stock price reflects people trying to pocket money of a quick stock jump before the launch (that many people seeking to buy stock will quickly increase the value of any held stock)and then all the buyers bailing on their stocks because lets face it you'll likely not see Funcom in your Meryll Lynch "buy" portfolios, it's not going to be a stable and profitable enough stock of any long period to be worth keeping. this level of stock dumping is going to make the price go down signifigantly for any company. But again, it's far from a "ZOMG the company is going under!" situation. It's just the market. Buy low, sell high. But when everyone tries to sell high; well, there's no one to buy and those prices quickly become "low".

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  • CadeCade Eppur si muove.Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Joeslop wrote: »
    kaliyama wrote: »
    Wait. If they spent 50 million on the game, and they have 800,000 people buying retail, plus 3-6 months of subscriptions, it seems like they'll at least break even on the whole thing.

    They still have to pay all their employees, their bills, maintain the servers, run the website and all the costs involved there.

    It's not just "400,000 people x $15 a month = We have tons of free money".

    They are saving some cash on GM's and mods who are not paid employees but instead have volunteers doing the job, where they got them be it forum wise or otherwise got no clue but it certain shows why so many reports of them have been for the ill when those people can do nothing to help or type with a U instead of a you.

    Not to mention the whole attempt at cybersex stuff...

    Cade on
  • FrogdiceFrogdice ClubPA
    edited August 2008
    True, but they most certainly don't have 6-12 million dollars of overhead on a monthly basis.

    Their best case scenario monthly income was $6 million at the time of that release. And since they are still hemorrhaging users at a rapid pace, it is way below that already. If they net $10-20 per box at retail that also means they only made $8-16 million from the original sale, leaving them with $30-42+ million in development costs they still haven't made up. And $50 million is the conservative estimate of their development and licensing costs.
    It's fairly common for CEO's and other executives to sell of large chunks of their stock.

    Not 17% of their total holdings, and not right after the biggest product release in the company's history. And certainly not when the stock is in freefall.
    EDIT: that is to say people have been constantly declaring the "end" of WoW and every single other MMO since pretty much their inceptions; they play it, don't like it and the obvious conclusion is that it will fail and the company will go under.

    But people declaring the death of WoW have done so in the face of contrary, positive evidence. This is not comparable to that at all. This is more comparable to people reacting to bad subscription information about Auto Assault, Sims Online, Earth and Beyond, Asheron's Call 2, etc.


    EDIT2: Also the current stock price compared to the price right before the companies biggest launch is fairly irrelevant.

    The comparison is with the price AFTER the release, not before.

    Frogdice on
  • GnomeTankGnomeTank Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Zek wrote: »
    Wow that's pretty ugly, I know AoC fell short of expectations but I didn't really expect Funcom to be in trouble over it. I have heard they went pretty far into the red during development though.

    From my understanding, AoC cost Funcom ~70m to make, and they basically bet the farm on it. Now, the CEO selling his stock could mean a few things. He may have sold it so an investment firm can buy it, and pump cash in to the company. He may have sold it because the company is going under (though, I would think this would be insider trading). Or he could have sold it because he is moving on from the company.

    GnomeTank on
    Sagroth wrote: »
    Oh c'mon FyreWulff, no one's gonna pay to visit Uranus.
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  • GnomeTankGnomeTank Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Also, it's a damn shame Auto Assault failed, because the late game in that, the huge PvP area with the alien invasion side plot was really quite entertaining. It just never got any traction (no pun intended) in the market.

    GnomeTank on
    Sagroth wrote: »
    Oh c'mon FyreWulff, no one's gonna pay to visit Uranus.
    Steam: Brainling, XBL / PSN: GnomeTank, NintendoID: Brainling, FF14: Zillius Rosh SFV: Brainling
  • Munkus BeaverMunkus Beaver Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited August 2008
    Hey look, a sitewhore.

    Hey look, an infraction.

    It's crazy how that works out. It's like math!

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