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Funcom Q4 2012 casually announces...

gamesrfungamesrfun Red Deer, ABPosts: 127Member

As if it wasn't a big deal, Funcom casually announced in their financial report that they had fired half their staff in Q4/2012 and that in Q1/2013 they anticipated axing another 25% of their staff.

And remember this is Funcom, so they don't mean 50%, and then 25% of the remainder.  They would have been clear if that was the case.

No, it means that Funcom in 6 months will have shed 75% of its employees. 

After all, the company is barely able to keep 7 million dollars a quarter flowing through the company coffers, despite having 2 AAA MMOs.

Other fun notes:

1)  The hub of Funcom in Norway has been gutted to less than 40 people.

2) If you were an Asian based Funcom employee, you lost your job.

3) If you were an employee in the U.S., you most likely lost your job.

4) Montreal was saved from the most damage.

5)  Funcom has significantly more debt now than its cash position. 

6)  Funcom is basically signing a deal with the devil to borrow a mere 10 million dollars more.  Recognize that the company is losing about 5 million US per quarter (although admittedly a good chunk of that is depreciation as they had to once again chop off another 3 million in value of The Secret World)

 

Comments

  • YizleYizle Atlanta, GAPosts: 517Member
    Thought I read they just opened up an office on the east coast of the US and were moving more employees there for further development of MMOs. This was in the last couple of months I thought.
  • gamesrfungamesrfun Red Deer, ABPosts: 127Member
    Originally posted by Yizle
    Thought I read they just opened up an office on the east coast of the US and were moving more employees there for further development of MMOs. This was in the last couple of months I thought.

    They moved some Montreal people to North Carolina.  But it was not a new office.

    In other words, Montreal people kept their jobs, although some are now in the U.S..

    Last time they released employment numbers they were near 360...so that brings them down to 90 minus customer service: 40 in Norway and 50 between Montreal and North Carolina.

     

  • NikopolNikopol The ZonePosts: 626Member Uncommon

    They really underperfomed badly with TSW, considering their expectations. I like the game, but financially it never took off, and I'm guessing Funcom was depending on it.

    Sad to see them struggle so badly. They've made some of my favorite games, and they always bring something at least a bit different to the table, but they've never exactly managed to make it big. I think Conan was their chance and they botched it. It probably caused a lack of interest in TSW, too.

    Here's still hoping they recover.

     

  • shamallshamall Imperial Beach, CAPosts: 516Member Common
    Had the number one scifi mmo of its time and blew it. 

    The Brave Do Not Fear The Grave

  • YizleYizle Atlanta, GAPosts: 517Member

    I think it started with Anarchy Online. Horrid release... like all of their games but once you got passed that was a really good game. But even a couple years later it still had some same bugs and problems.

     

    Mem leak anyone?

  • StonesDKStonesDK SomewherePosts: 1,805Member
    If Funcom could be compared to a single developer it would be Brad MQuaid. They have the vision, just not the ability
  • FromHellFromHell NY, NYPosts: 1,311Member
    Well, that's bad because they have the best MMOs ever made. Too bad the majority of gamers prefers cartoony hand holding T rated MMOs with elves and little cuddly fantasy races wearing pink tutus.

    Secrets of Dragon?s Spine Trailer.. ! :D
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fwT9cFVQCMw

    Best MMOs ever played: Ultima, EvE, SW Galaxies, Age of Conan, The Secret World
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T2X_SbZCHpc&t=21s
    .


    .
    The Return of ELITE !
    image

  • GaoxinGaoxin BluhPosts: 196Member Uncommon

    Anarchy Online was my first mmorpg and I played it for 3 years.

     

    Goodbye Anarchy Online remake and AO2. :[

  • YizleYizle Atlanta, GAPosts: 517Member
    Originally posted by Gaoxin

    Anarchy Online was my first mmorpg and I played it for 3 years.

     

    Goodbye Anarchy Online remake and AO2. :[

    Never heard of any news of a an AO2 in the works. I think AO just needs to bring a much more experienced release team to finish and polish their products because it just seems they lack that in their designs. AO was a fun game and enjoyed it. AoC... Tortage was good after that blah. And again another game with a memleak at release. TSW enjoyed beta but did not have that much interest in it. Bought it when it went B2P for $15. At that price was a good game for a bit.

     

    They do have good concepts and ideas. Decent design but always with some major flaws that it takes them way too long after release to fix.

    Besides EA I don't want any company to fail or disappear.

  • Rthuth434Rthuth434 uniondale, NYPosts: 346Member

    Operating profit (EBIT), negatively impacted by 5,145 TUSD impairment charges was -5,947 TUSD for 4Q12 compared to -5,189 TUSD for 4Q11. Result for the period was -6,433 TUSD compared to -6,096 TUSD for 4Q11.

  • SpottyGekkoSpottyGekko RotterdamPosts: 3,845Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Gaoxin

    Anarchy Online was my first mmorpg and I played it for 3 years.

     

    Goodbye Anarchy Online remake and AO2. :[

    Perhaps not....

     

    Some F2P group with loads of cash (like Perfect World) will probably buyout Funcom and turn AO, AoC and TSW into cash shop centric money spinners. image

     

    Oh the Horror, the Horror...

  • augustgraceaugustgrace Cottonwood, CAPosts: 624Member Uncommon

    Not sure where you're getting some of your information.  I've read the report and the presentation, and it is probably the most positive Funcom position I've seen in a long time.

    3 main hubs. Montreal is now dedicated to mobile games, developers of non-mobile games shifted to NC office.  Oslo office will be dedicated to mid-core games but currently its entire 40 person staff is fully dedicated to getting Lego minfigures out early 2014.

    Profits Q4'13 3500tusd more than Q4'12

    Positive cash flow

    Paid down debts; roughly 7,000tusd

    Working with KGJ to restructure existing loans

    Conan movie staring Arnold confirmed; aimed for 2014

    The Longest Journey/Dreamfall lincensed out

    Montreal office already secured two new deals with Lego

     

     

    By no means is Funcom a huge success, nor have they ever been, but things do seem to be looking up for them.  

    edit:  seeing people calculating impairments in revenues.  While that has to be presented in the financial reports, an impairment isn't an actual expense that occurred during the period.  Rather it is an adjustment to the value of an asset.

     

  • FromHellFromHell NY, NYPosts: 1,311Member
    Originally posted by Gaoxin

    Anarchy Online was my first mmorpg and I played it for 3 years.

     

    Goodbye Anarchy Online remake and AO2. :[

    revamp is still in the works according to the info from this week

     

    http://forums.anarchy-online.com/showthread.php?t=604018

    they even posted a video some days ago from the new engine port

    http://youtu.be/Ej2_VvvGTRQ

    Secrets of Dragon?s Spine Trailer.. ! :D
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fwT9cFVQCMw

    Best MMOs ever played: Ultima, EvE, SW Galaxies, Age of Conan, The Secret World
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T2X_SbZCHpc&t=21s
    .


    .
    The Return of ELITE !
    image

  • Insane666Insane666 gdanskPosts: 66Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by FromHell
    Well, that's bad because they have the best MMOs ever made. Too bad the majority of gamers prefers cartoony hand holding T rated MMOs with elves and little cuddly fantasy races wearing pink tutus.

    AO has atroxes in pink tutus, but yeah, i totally agree wth you on your point, one of the few studios not afraid to do things differently, add something from themselves, instead just copy paste the standard themepark model into a new IP

     

    alltho their best mmo is their oldest one - Anarchy Online, while both AoC and TSW are different from most of other modern MMOs it was AO wich was totally unique

     

     

    Originally posted by shamall
    Had the number one scifi mmo of its time and blew it. 

    sadly, alltho deep inside im still hoping the new engine wont turn out vaporware, that FC wont just die, at least not before ressurecting Anarchy Online pushing enuff life into it to last another decade,,,

    Games previously played: AO, AoC, Aion, AoW, Eve, SWTor, WaR, STO, TSW, DCUO, FE, BP, ProjectEntropia, FootballSuperstars!

  • GaoxinGaoxin BluhPosts: 196Member Uncommon
    AO2 is only a dream of mine...waiting for it for about 7 years now, but they keep releasing elfs. Not a single company managed to release a great scifi mmorpg, except maybe EVE but I couldnt enjoy for more than 3 months. :|
  • RaventreeRaventree Yourtown, MNPosts: 456Member
    Ouch!  That is too bad, I like Funcom.  I don't currently play AoC or TSW, but I still think they put out a good game.  I hope they are able to pull it together and make some money in the future.

    Currently playing:
    Rift
    Played:
    SWToR, Aion,EQ, Dark Age of Camelot
    World of Warcraft, AoC

  • Ex0dUs101Ex0dUs101 ManchesterPosts: 268Member

    Funcom have been very open about what they are doing, and the restructuring taking place, and its a very positive step for them, certainly not doom and gloom, just smart business and long overdue.

    It makes me much happier to see them taking action to improve things.

  • FromHellFromHell NY, NYPosts: 1,311Member
    Originally posted by Insane666
    Originally posted by FromHell
    Well, that's bad because they have the best MMOs ever made. Too bad the majority of gamers prefers cartoony hand holding T rated MMOs with elves and little cuddly fantasy races wearing pink tutus.

    AO has atroxes in pink tutus, but yeah, i totally agree wth you on your point, one of the few studios not afraid to do things differently, add something from themselves, instead just copy paste the standard themepark model into a new IP

     

    alltho their best mmo is their oldest one - Anarchy Online, while both AoC and TSW are different from most of other modern MMOs it was AO wich was totally unique

     

     

    Originally posted by shamall
    Had the number one scifi mmo of its time and blew it. 

    sadly, alltho deep inside im still hoping the new engine wont turn out vaporware, that FC wont just die, at least not before ressurecting Anarchy Online pushing enuff life into it to last another decade,,,

    I think this is FCs most important year to either go down or rise like a Phoenix..

    AO engine revamp, making the game future proof

    AoC crafting revamp and single server tech, PvP changes and additions

    TSW continuing with solid content, animation system revamp, PvP additions

     

    if they get all this done in 2013 -> epic win

    Secrets of Dragon?s Spine Trailer.. ! :D
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fwT9cFVQCMw

    Best MMOs ever played: Ultima, EvE, SW Galaxies, Age of Conan, The Secret World
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T2X_SbZCHpc&t=21s
    .


    .
    The Return of ELITE !
    image

  • Ramonski7Ramonski7 Aurora, ILPosts: 2,656Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by augustgrace

    Not sure where you're getting some of your information.  I've read the report and the presentation, and it is probably the most positive Funcom position I've seen in a long time.

    3 main hubs. Montreal is now dedicated to mobile games, developers of non-mobile games shifted to NC office.  Oslo office will be dedicated to mid-core games but currently its entire 40 person staff is fully dedicated to getting Lego minfigures out early 2014.

    Profits Q4'13 3500tusd more than Q4'12

    Positive cash flow

    Paid down debts; roughly 7,000tusd

    Working with KGJ to restructure existing loans

    Conan movie staring Arnold confirmed; aimed for 2014

    The Longest Journey/Dreamfall lincensed out

    Montreal office already secured two new deals with Lego

     

     

    By no means is Funcom a huge success, nor have they ever been, but things do seem to be looking up for them.  

    edit:  seeing people calculating impairments in revenues.  While that has to be presented in the financial reports, an impairment isn't an actual expense that occurred during the period.  Rather it is an adjustment to the value of an asset.

     

    Thank you augustgrace. I too read the Q4 report and didn't get the doom and gloom feeling resonating within this thread. If anyone was hoping for Blizzard, NCSoft or Nexon like numbers from a Norwegian based game devloper, think again. Funcom is a prime example of a small game developer who caught a break with a well known IP and tried to capitalize on that in order to position themselves for all their future endeavors. Unfortunately things didn't pan out in their favor. The words "spreading yourself too thin" have never rang truer.

     

    So to me it seems they have learned their lesson and have taken their lumps. And are now poised to restructure and consolidate to three offices (down from 5) with 3 independently focused business areas:

    • North Carolina focus will be devloping and operating their existing large scale mmos
    • Montreal will focus on high-quality mobile and tablet based games and technologies
    • Oslo will focus on LEGO Online and high-quality MMOs in the mid-core segment
    I don't know about you but that's far from painting a picture of a developer on the brink of shutting it's doors or selling off their IPs. More like trimming the fat and being content with what they have and more importantly what they are capable of doing.
     

     

    image
    "Small minds talk about people, average minds talk about events, great minds talk about ideas."

  • TheocritusTheocritus Gary, INPosts: 3,740Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Nikopol

    They really underperfomed badly with TSW, considering their expectations. I like the game, but financially it never took off, and I'm guessing Funcom was depending on it.

    Sad to see them struggle so badly. They've made some of my favorite games, and they always bring something at least a bit different to the table, but they've never exactly managed to make it big. I think Conan was their chance and they botched it. It probably caused a lack of interest in TSW, too.

    Here's still hoping they recover.

     

     Last numbers I heard said they made about 35% of the amount they needed to make with TSW and that was just to break even......i think youre right also that AoC hurt the sales for TSW because it angered so many.

  • gamesrfungamesrfun Red Deer, ABPosts: 127Member
    Originally posted by Ramonski7
    Originally posted by augustgrace

    Not sure where you're getting some of your information.  I've read the report and the presentation, and it is probably the most positive Funcom position I've seen in a long time.

    3 main hubs. Montreal is now dedicated to mobile games, developers of non-mobile games shifted to NC office.  Oslo office will be dedicated to mid-core games but currently its entire 40 person staff is fully dedicated to getting Lego minfigures out early 2014.

    Profits Q4'13 3500tusd more than Q4'12

    Positive cash flow

    Paid down debts; roughly 7,000tusd

    Working with KGJ to restructure existing loans

    Conan movie staring Arnold confirmed; aimed for 2014

    The Longest Journey/Dreamfall lincensed out

    Montreal office already secured two new deals with Lego

     

     

    By no means is Funcom a huge success, nor have they ever been, but things do seem to be looking up for them.  

    edit:  seeing people calculating impairments in revenues.  While that has to be presented in the financial reports, an impairment isn't an actual expense that occurred during the period.  Rather it is an adjustment to the value of an asset.

     

    Thank you augustgrace. I too read the Q4 report and didn't get the doom and gloom feeling resonating within this thread. If anyone was hoping for Blizzard, NCSoft or Nexon like numbers from a Norwegian based game devloper, think again. Funcom is a prime example of a small game developer who caught a break with a well known IP and tried to capitalize on that in order to position themselves for all their future endeavors. Unfortunately things didn't pan out in their favor. The words "spreading yourself too thin" have never rang truer.

     

    So to me it seems they have learned their lesson and have taken their lumps. And are now poised to restructure and consolidate to three offices (down from 5) with 3 independently focused business areas:

    • North Carolina focus will be devloping and operating their existing large scale mmos
    • Montreal will focus on high-quality mobile and tablet based games and technologies
    • Oslo will focus on LEGO Online and high-quality MMOs in the mid-core segment
    I don't know about you but that's far from painting a picture of a developer on the brink of shutting it's doors or selling off their IPs. More like trimming the fat and being content with what they have and more importantly what they are capable of doing.
     

     

    Their brand new MMO is barely treading water with no prospects for increased revenue for at least 12-18 months.  At best they can tread water and even then they are barely scraping by. 

    They have no money for future development considering that they must keep millions of dollars available on their line of credit, of which they so handily ignore as part of their carried debt.

    I mean, sure, getting rid of 250+ employees helps, but what do you do then?  I can't imagine spirits are really high now that 75% of your friends lost their jobs.

     

  • MardukkMardukk Posts: 1,556Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by FromHell
    Well, that's bad because they have the best MMOs ever made. Too bad the majority of gamers prefers cartoony hand holding T rated MMOs with elves and little cuddly fantasy races wearing pink tutus.

    I agree.  I don't know where I'm going to go for a more mature setting.  Those games have issues but damn the setting was fantastic in all three of their big releases.  Maybe cartoon pink elf tree people are the only future in the MMO industry....it's a shame.

     

    As other's have said I think the release of AoC really screwed their name and TSW.  I didn't even open my wife's copy of AoC it was so damn bad at release.

  • bcbullybcbully Westland, MIPosts: 8,275Member Uncommon

    • A new business model was launched for The Secret World 12th December increasing sales by more than 30% overall and quadrupling activity in the game 

  • Ramonski7Ramonski7 Aurora, ILPosts: 2,656Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by gamesrfun
    Originally posted by Ramonski7
    Originally posted by augustgrace

    Not sure where you're getting some of your information.  I've read the report and the presentation, and it is probably the most positive Funcom position I've seen in a long time.

    3 main hubs. Montreal is now dedicated to mobile games, developers of non-mobile games shifted to NC office.  Oslo office will be dedicated to mid-core games but currently its entire 40 person staff is fully dedicated to getting Lego minfigures out early 2014.

    Profits Q4'13 3500tusd more than Q4'12

    Positive cash flow

    Paid down debts; roughly 7,000tusd

    Working with KGJ to restructure existing loans

    Conan movie staring Arnold confirmed; aimed for 2014

    The Longest Journey/Dreamfall lincensed out

    Montreal office already secured two new deals with Lego

     

     

    By no means is Funcom a huge success, nor have they ever been, but things do seem to be looking up for them.  

    edit:  seeing people calculating impairments in revenues.  While that has to be presented in the financial reports, an impairment isn't an actual expense that occurred during the period.  Rather it is an adjustment to the value of an asset.

     

    Thank you augustgrace. I too read the Q4 report and didn't get the doom and gloom feeling resonating within this thread. If anyone was hoping for Blizzard, NCSoft or Nexon like numbers from a Norwegian based game devloper, think again. Funcom is a prime example of a small game developer who caught a break with a well known IP and tried to capitalize on that in order to position themselves for all their future endeavors. Unfortunately things didn't pan out in their favor. The words "spreading yourself too thin" have never rang truer.

     

    So to me it seems they have learned their lesson and have taken their lumps. And are now poised to restructure and consolidate to three offices (down from 5) with 3 independently focused business areas:

    • North Carolina focus will be devloping and operating their existing large scale mmos
    • Montreal will focus on high-quality mobile and tablet based games and technologies
    • Oslo will focus on LEGO Online and high-quality MMOs in the mid-core segment
    I don't know about you but that's far from painting a picture of a developer on the brink of shutting it's doors or selling off their IPs. More like trimming the fat and being content with what they have and more importantly what they are capable of doing.
     

     

    Their brand new MMO is barely treading water with no prospects for increased revenue for at least 12-18 months.  At best they can tread water and even then they are barely scraping by. 

    They have no money for future development considering that they must keep millions of dollars available on their line of credit, of which they so handily ignore as part of their carried debt.

    I mean, sure, getting rid of 250+ employees helps, but what do you do then?  I can't imagine spirits are really high now that 75% of your friends lost their jobs.

     

    But what you are not understanding is that Funcom has NEVER been a really big company. I'm sure they are use to running things with small teams with even smaller budgets. We are talking about a game company that got it's big break in 2008. That's a little less than 5 years ago. And honestly I don't recall AO releasing to stellar praises. So it's not like Funcom is not use to being behind the 8 ball and building from what they have. If anything you have to admit that they are one of few game developers that has always supported their products. They maybe slow and suffer from delusions of grandeur at times. But they have never abandoned their games or it's players.

     

    Hell the last content update for AO was 2009, after AoC was released. That along with the announcement of a new gaming engine for AO still in the works is just two examples of supporting all their games, no matter how old. They are also one of few game devlopers that not only develop but publish their own games still.

     

    Look I'm no huge fan of Funcom, I never played AO, barely played AoC and played TSW for only a month. But I'm not so blinded by ignorance that I don't see that they are at least making a effort to put out something different with each mmo they release. NONE of their mmos play like the previous one...NONE.

    image
    "Small minds talk about people, average minds talk about events, great minds talk about ideas."

This discussion has been closed.