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Earnings Roundup

Take-Two profit tops expectations

September 05, 2008

Take-Two Interactive Software Inc., the video game publisher in acquisition talks with Electronic Arts Inc., reported a third-quarter profit that exceeded analysts' projections on sales of Grand Theft Auto IV.

Net income of $51.8 million, or 67 cents a share, contrasted with a loss of $58.5 million, or 81 cents, a year earlier, New York-based Take-Two said.

Sales in the quarter that ended July 31 more than doubled to $433.8 million from $206.4 million a year earlier and exceeded the $382.1-million average estimate of analysts.

Excluding some costs, profit of 93 cents exceeded the 54-cent average of analysts' estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

Third-quarter sales may have stolen from future revenue. The surge led Take-Two to lower its profit outlook for the quarter ending Oct. 31 and raise the full-year projection, Chief Executive Ben Feder said.

Fourth-quarter profit will be 1 cent to 5 cents a share, excluding certain costs, on sales of as much as $335 million, the company said. Take-Two had projected June 5 a profit of 10 cents to 20 cents on sales of as much as $350 million. Analysts estimate 17 cents on revenue of $350.9 million.

Take-Two shares rose 12 cents to $23.35 in extended trading after the results. They gained 6 cents to $23.23 in regular trading and have advanced 26% this year.

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