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Lynxer2007

Infogrames to Reveal Atari Profitability Plan Soon

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UPDATE: Plan unveiled, click here

 

Got this from biz.GameDaily.com

 

"Take it out and shoot it" apparently not an option

 

Reuters reported today that Infogrames has said that it will reveal its plan to restore profitability to Atari soon. Europe's largest game publisher owns 51% of its affiliate Atari, which is habitually blamed for the group's operating losses. Chief Executive Patrick Leleu would not confirm whether Infogrames planned to sell Atari or not.

 

"As I said in June, we are negotiating with the management and the board of Atari Inc to restore (financial) equilibriums," said Leleu during a shareholders' annual meeting. "We are looking after the interests of Infogrames and its shareholders. We are trying to negotiate action plans; talks are continuing ... I should be able to announce some things rapidly."

 

Atari recently posted a net loss for the fiscal year of 2007 at $69.7 million.

 

I wonder what there plan is. Probably to concentrate on the Wii and DS mostly, like what Majesco is doing. The Wii and DS are the best selling systems, so it makes sense.

 

For the link, click here

Edited by EMZayas

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Bye, bye, Infogrames. Nothing against Atari or Infogrames, but I don't think it's good business practice to throw money at a ship that's sinking yet again unless your name is Nelson Rockefeller or Bill Gates.

Atari may always be a sinking ship, though. That doesn't make it a waste by any means, but it's just not smart to stake your company's existence on it. I think the name is more of a hobbyist item now, and it takes time, TLC, and a special kind of person to put money into it.

 

Long live Atari, even if it be in the hands of hobbyists.

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I just wish Bushnell would purchase the company before its inevitable crash and burn at the hands of Infogrames. I put a lot of faith in that company, and it hasn't lived up to my expectations.

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I just wish Bushnell would purchase the company before its inevitable crash and burn at the hands of Infogrames. I put a lot of faith in that company, and it hasn't lived up to my expectations.

Does he care about Atari? Judging by one or two things I have seen, it seemed like he was pretty much all about making money. I'd rather have some crazy Atari fan billionaire take over who doesn't care if he makes a ton of money from the Atari name who would put out quality products most Atari fans have been waiting for.

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I just wish Bushnell would purchase the company before its inevitable crash and burn at the hands of Infogrames. I put a lot of faith in that company, and it hasn't lived up to my expectations.

Does he care about Atari? Judging by one or two things I have seen, it seemed like he was pretty much all about making money. I'd rather have some crazy Atari fan billionaire take over who doesn't care if he makes a ton of money from the Atari name who would put out quality products most Atari fans have been waiting for.

I agree. Bushnell has all of his (and other people's) money tied up in his uWink Bistro restaurant. He already lost his big expensive house over it when investors pulled the funding on the project prior to its opening date. He moved his family into an apartment in L.A. a few years ago to make the final push to get the doors open at the first uWink location. For people who know who Bushnell is, he already gets a boost from the Atari name, along with his success with Chuck E. Cheese. And for those who don't know the story, associating uWink with Atari would probably be a mistake, as uWink hopes to be the future of casual gaming, socializing and dining, while Atari is stuck in the past.

 

As far as a "crazy Atari fan billionaire" - it would be nice if there was a real-life person like the character Jon Lovitz played in "Benchwarmers". Not likely though...

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Mmmkay... Not much of a story. Some actual facts would have been nice. What's the plan?

 

I like the focus on DS and Wii games idea. Maybe even PSP. But spending huge amounts on creating 360 or PS3 games... They probably wouldn't see a big enough return from those consoles. Atari needs to come up with the next big thing that is "Easy to learn but difficult to master."

Edited by Gregory DG

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Mmmkay... Not much of a story. Some actual facts would have been nice. What's the plan?

 

I like the focus on DS and Wii games idea. Maybe even PSP. But spending huge amounts on creating 360 or PS3 games... They probably wouldn't see a big enough return from those consoles. Atari needs to come up with the next big thing that is "Easy to learn but difficult to master."

And they need to get the Falshback 2 portable out there. And support Live Arcade and defintiely get a 2600 section on the Wii Virtual Console (or an arcade section). And they need to put out a 2600 joystick that works with the Wiimote. And make some kind of minigame collection for the DS and PSP that has 10 second versions of all the Atari properties in it and some games "inspired" by other classic properties, and call it "Atari Arcade Party" or something. There, now I've released their profitability plan. And in the "probably not profitable, but please make it" category: Yars Revenge schump for Xbox Live and Wii Ware.

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Mmmkay... Not much of a story. Some actual facts would have been nice. What's the plan?

 

They said they'll reveal the plans soon(I wish I knew how soon). I just made this thread to hear ideas of others on what they might do. Once they reveal their plans(whenever that'll be), I'll post it here in this thread, not make a new one. (Unless someone else beats me to it)

 

And they need to get the Falshback 2 portable out there. And support Live Arcade and defintiely get a 2600 section on the Wii Virtual Console (or an arcade section)...

 

I agree. Putting their classic games on XLA and Wii VC is a good idea. Atari Classics Evolved will be coming out on PSP. Looking forward to that. Dont know why they dont have a section in the Wii VC yet. Maybe it has something to do with that 20% job cuts a few months back. Anyways, I think thats a good choice for them.

Edited by EMZayas

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DS...Ok...Wii...no way. I'm sorry, but while the hardware is a mass success (nobody can deny that, except the stuck up b*tches that just don't like the fact it is suceedeing) the software is not moveing. That doesn't sound like a good Idea to me.

 

Now games for Virtual console, and Live Arcade (and whatever else they can whore it out to) that's a good Idea. I wonder how many people would pay $5 for a 30 year old game they could have for less than a buck if they bothered looking :ponder After all, a lot of my online games that I find most enjoyable are obvios ripoffs of old school arcade and atari games.

 

And hell yeah, they need a portable flashback, that would be friggin awesome (and perhaps to make one finely have a cart port on it?) I mean, I know, everybody wants it dedicated so you don't use old atari games... But honeslty, how about makeing say...an activision Anthology cart for a Flashback cart console? I'd sure buy it.

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Personally, I think the easiest plan is to take the Atari brand label and use it for casual type games for the Wii/DS. It's mostly those of us 30ish and over who have warm fuzzy feelings for the brand name anyways - so why not attempt to use the name for the new games that have been brought into gaming by Nintendo. Basically, do exactly what Majesco did a year or so ago, but with the Atari brand name.

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yeah me too, but if they just made good games and hyped the hell out of them. Look at GOW, Halo 3, money and lots of it can be made, but make the game that people will want to play. Make a shooter on the 360 and a party/puzzler on the wii, not the other way around.

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I see a number of the armchair CEOs have taken a leave from running their own multinational companies to offer Atari business strategy advice. :P

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TO using a famous american marketing strapline....I'll buy that (Atari) for a dollar...or 50p going by current exchange rates

 

Just remind me...when was the last time Atari were EVER successful as a software only company

 

 

Perhaps is M$ buys out Atari and sells lots of Xbox's under the Atari banner...that might be interesting

 

Or, failing that Infogrammes/Atari and one of the major Linux distro's come together to create a gaming computer/console in a linux box

 

Can't see Atari remaining in the retro plug and play gaming market much longer...from what i hear that market is fast going down the toilet because too much product is out there, the product has limited market potential and limited use/lifespan

 

If Atari is to remain in the retro plug and play gaming market, it needs to do something in the order of what the VES/VCS did to the dedicated console/games market way back when

 

If Atari want's to remain in the software market, it's going to have to severely streamline it product line and focus on what it did way back when....new gaming genre's and new gaming technologies

 

The problem with modern games is...it's sold on graphics, sound, huge budgets (i.e. enough to feed, clothe and house the population of manchester for a month) and little else...i.e. where's the gameplay, playability, the feeling of 'wanting one more go', value for money, creating new gaming genre's/gaming technologies

 

Most of the games out there now are SH!T with a CAPITAL S...I bet you any money, if you gave the people that created Star Raiders or the 2600 version of Pacman or the BBC version of Elite access to the same budgets now usually spent on today's cack, just imagine how much better and more improved the game (or games) would be

 

Perhaps Atari needs to get back to where they started from...namely creating, inventing, pioneering and developing something extraordinary, something revolutionary, something that is just unlike anything on the market at the moment

 

the only way that Atari are going to be able to do that is by investing in new gaming genre's and new gaming technologies and stop making the same mistakes that other games companies are doing (i.e. sticking with the status quo and taking their customers for a ride)

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Perhaps Atari needs to get back to where they started from...namely creating, inventing, pioneering and developing something extraordinary, something revolutionary, something that is just unlike anything on the market at the moment

 

the only way that Atari are going to be able to do that is by investing in new gaming genre's and new gaming technologies and stop making the same mistakes that other games companies are doing (i.e. sticking with the status quo and taking their customers for a ride)

 

Yeah, they could take motion control technology that has been around for at least 20 years, perfect it, and call it something revolutionary, and make billions of dollars...oh wait, it's already been done, sorry Atari, re-introduce the Mind-link or something.

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Perhaps Atari needs to get back to where they started from...namely creating, inventing, pioneering and developing something extraordinary, something revolutionary, something that is just unlike anything on the market at the moment

 

the only way that Atari are going to be able to do that is by investing in new gaming genre's and new gaming technologies and stop making the same mistakes that other games companies are doing (i.e. sticking with the status quo and taking their customers for a ride)

 

Before they can do that they have to make money any they are getting money from only 3 main consumer groups

 

Classic Gamers, DBZ Fans and D&D Fans

 

I beleve a mony can be made by making NEW addictive games (NOT remaking Classic Games) that are easy to Learn and Difficult to master and sell them for $15 While still makeing games for the 3 groups I mentoned.

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Just found this. I guess it's their plan for profitability. Link is here

 

Implementation of IESA Strategic Programme Advancing Changes in the Composition of the Board of Directors of Atari Inc., and Reinforced Focus on Atari Inc.’s Turnaround

 

PARIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Implementation of IESA Strategic Programme

 

Infogrames Entertainment SA (IESA or the Group) is making progress in implementing the multi-stage strategic programme its management outlined following the announcement of its annual results and during its Annual General Meeting:

 

1) Relaunching the publishing initiatives of the Group to introduce new video games based its extensive portfolio of franchises, including Alone in the Dark, Dungeons & Dragons and Never Winter Nights

 

2) Optimizing the global distribution network with best-in-class sales channels in the major markets of the US, Europe and Asia

 

3) Leveraging the Atari brand name and IESA’s other key assets to pursue opportunities in online distribution, advertising and entertainment

 

4) Maintaining appropriate financial foundation for the Group

 

As a result of implementing this strategic plan, the Group expects to re-emerge as one of the leading players in the video gaming industry with strong publishing and distribution capabilities worldwide.

 

Changes in the Composition of the Board of Atari, Inc.

 

Consistent with the strategic objectives set out above, the IESA Board of Directors decided, at its meeting of October 5, 2007, to exercise its rights, as the majority shareholder of Atari, Inc. and as per the Delaware Law, to change the composition of the Board of Directors of Atari, Inc. IESA has executed and delivered a written consent to remove five of the current directors of Atari. Such action will be implemented after Atari has delivered proper notice to all of its stockholders as required under U.S. securities laws. Immediately following this change, three directors, Evence Charles Coppee, Jean-Michel Perbet and Thomas Schmider will remain on the board of Atari Inc. Additional directors will be nominated to serve on the Atari Board, including directors who will qualify as independent to comply with applicable regulatory requirements.

 

Mission of the New Board of Atari

 

Establish measures to Improve Atari Profitability

 

In 2006-2007, based on US GAAP, Atari, Inc. had negative profit of US$70m and a negative operating cash flow of US$37m on revenue of US$122m, and therefore represented a significant drain on the Group’s profitability.

 

In order to stem this high level of losses, IESA expects the newly composed Board of Director of Atari, Inc. to focus on implementing necessary measures to restructure the company with a view toward stabilizing its operations and reducing losses to the benefit of all its shareholders.

 

Appoint a Chief Restructuring Officer

 

In order to implement these measures, the Board will select and appoint a Chief Restructuring Officer who will take all necessary actions in order to assess and address immediate requirements of Atari, Inc. with the goal of repositioning the company as a reliable player in the US video games market.

 

Reinforce Focus on Atari Inc’s Turnaround

 

The change in the composition of the Board of Directors of Atari, Inc. will allow Atari Inc. to work more closely with third parties and also IESA in order to address its turnaround.

 

Leverage the Atari Brand, in Coordination with the Group

 

IESA continues to own the Atari brand name worldwide and the atari.com url. Atari, Inc. will retain a license to use the name for videogames in North America until 2013.

 

In line with its key strategic objectives, IESA is investigating with Atari, Inc. how to better leverage the Atari brand name across a number of key global initiatives both in relation to packaged goods and online distribution and gaming.

 

Looking to the Future

 

IESA expects to make announcements in the near future with regard to its publishing line-up, new distribution alliances, brand management initiatives and online strategy.

 

IESA's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Patrick Leleu, declared: "The appointment of a new Board for Atari is a keystone of the Strategic Programme to improve the Group’s operating and financial performance. This major step will allow the Group to get closer to achieving the key objectives of this plan, which include: re-launching the publishing activities to leverage the Group's intellectual properties, taking the necessary actions to improve further our distribution, particularly in the United States, developing an online presence to take full advantage of this global entertainment medium, and more extensive use of the Atari name, one of the most recognized brands in the industry.”

 

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements. Although IESA believes its expectations are based on reasonable assumptions, these forward-looking statements are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated in the forward-looking statements.

 

About Infogrames Entertainment and Atari :

 

Infogrames Entertainment (IESA), the parent company of the Atari Group, is listed on the Paris Euronext stock exchange (ISIN code: FR-0000052573) and has two principal subsidiaries: Atari Europe, a privately-held company, and Atari, Inc., a United States corporation listed on NASDAQ (ATAR).

 

The Atari Group is a producer, publisher and distributor of interactive entertainment software for all market segments and in all existing game formats (Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony) and on CD-ROM for PC. Its games are sold in more than 60 countries.

 

The Atari Group’s extensive catalogue of popular games is based on original franchises (Alone in the Dark, V-Rally, Test Drive, etc.) and international licenses (Dragon Ball Z, Dungeons & Dragons, etc.).

 

For more information: http://www.atari.com

 

So I guess this is their plan. I don't know what to say. I thought it would be something really worth looking into. I guess not.

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What's this about?

 

IESA continues to own the Atari brand name worldwide and the atari.com url. Atari, Inc. will retain a license to use the name for videogames in North America until 2013.

 

Does that mean Infogrames loses the Atari name in 2013?!

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Actually Nolan sold his house because for nearly 15 years he's been paying literally every dollar earned to repay back an advance of $10 million against the IPO of his Androbots company from Merrill Lynch. Merrill got cold feet on doing a technology IPO and then wanted Nolan to return the $10mill which he had invested and lost paying off CeC debts and Androbot debts.

 

Selling the house was unbelievably hard for him, but he sold it, Merrill snatch up the profits and Nolans long standing debt was at long last paid off...

 

Then uWink started and for nearly 7 years, $24mill in investors funds went in, and essentially nothing came out except a few Snap! terminals. Well now we have uWink, interesting, but honestly -- its nothing more ground-breaking then essentially taking the touchscreen ordering terminal in the drivethrough window and moving it to patrons tables. Its not proprietary and I'm sure we'll start to see similar use of it at local Chilis, TGIF's and even McD's in the coming year or so. So the novelty of uWink is going to wear off very quickly.

 

 

Curt

 

I just wish Bushnell would purchase the company before its inevitable crash and burn at the hands of Infogrames. I put a lot of faith in that company, and it hasn't lived up to my expectations.

Does he care about Atari? Judging by one or two things I have seen, it seemed like he was pretty much all about making money. I'd rather have some crazy Atari fan billionaire take over who doesn't care if he makes a ton of money from the Atari name who would put out quality products most Atari fans have been waiting for.

I agree. Bushnell has all of his (and other people's) money tied up in his uWink Bistro restaurant. He already lost his big expensive house over it when investors pulled the funding on the project prior to its opening date. He moved his family into an apartment in L.A. a few years ago to make the final push to get the doors open at the first uWink location. For people who know who Bushnell is, he already gets a boost from the Atari name, along with his success with Chuck E. Cheese. And for those who don't know the story, associating uWink with Atari would probably be a mistake, as uWink hopes to be the future of casual gaming, socializing and dining, while Atari is stuck in the past.

 

As far as a "crazy Atari fan billionaire" - it would be nice if there was a real-life person like the character Jon Lovitz played in "Benchwarmers". Not likely though...

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No, what Infogrames did is, they own the Atari name and assets and licensed the use of the Atari name and assets to Infogrames SA (formerly GT Interative) which then renamed itself Atari, Inc. Of course, then Infogrames decided to also use the name itself for Atari Europe, Atari UK, Atari Australia, etc....

 

In 2013 the license expires and is up either for renewal or Atari, Inc will have to change its name to something else. You have to understand that Atari, Inc is technically a totally separate company from Infogrames, however Infogrames is the majority stock holder (owning 51.8% of Atari, Inc stock) therefor while it doesn't OWN Atari, Inc... it gets to dictate what Atari Inc does and doesn't do. Also yesterday Infogrames announced that is has essentially GUTTED the 8 member board of Atari, Inc of 5 of its board members and will be bringing in some kind of Chief Restructuring Officer so "fix" Atari, Inc's financial and operating woes...

 

 

Curt

 

What's this about?

 

IESA continues to own the Atari brand name worldwide and the atari.com url. Atari, Inc. will retain a license to use the name for videogames in North America until 2013.

 

Does that mean Infogrames loses the Atari name in 2013?!

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Actually Nolan sold his house because for nearly 15 years he's been paying literally every dollar earned to repay back an advance of $10 million against the IPO of his Androbots company from Merrill Lynch. Merrill got cold feet on doing a technology IPO and then wanted Nolan to return the $10mill which he had invested and lost paying off CeC debts and Androbot debts.

 

Selling the house was unbelievably hard for him, but he sold it, Merrill snatch up the profits and Nolans long standing debt was at long last paid off...

 

Then uWink started and for nearly 7 years, $24mill in investors funds went in, and essentially nothing came out except a few Snap! terminals. Well now we have uWink, interesting, but honestly -- its nothing more ground-breaking then essentially taking the touchscreen ordering terminal in the drivethrough window and moving it to patrons tables. Its not proprietary and I'm sure we'll start to see similar use of it at local Chilis, TGIF's and even McD's in the coming year or so. So the novelty of uWink is going to wear off very quickly.

Yeah, I don't understand uWink. Ever listen to Nolen talk about it. From his attitude, you'de think he invented something outstandingly original and created a new Atari like juggernaut.

 

I honestly believe he's going to end up dying a broke and crazy old man.

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Not wishing to 'bitch' or state the blindingly and patently obvious but isn't UWINK and CHUCK E CHEESE/SHOWTIME PIZZA the same thing but using a different entertainment/media wrinkle

 

Somewhat like Mr Bushnell setting up another Atari alike company again...not that he has the money or the talent to

 

Let's wait till 2013 and let the Atari licences expire and we can give Atari a viking burial (as in, let's put Atari out of it's misery)

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Actually Nolan sold his house because for nearly 15 years he's been paying literally every dollar earned to repay back an advance of $10 million against the IPO of his Androbots company from Merrill Lynch. Merrill got cold feet on doing a technology IPO and then wanted Nolan to return the $10mill which he had invested and lost paying off CeC debts and Androbot debts.

 

Selling the house was unbelievably hard for him, but he sold it, Merrill snatch up the profits and Nolans long standing debt was at long last paid off...

 

For those who are curious about this, Nolan did an interview for a San Jose newspaper around this time where he basically came clean for the first time about his financial troubles. I don't know if you can find the article online or not.

 

When I shot the documentary he was literally a few months away from losing the house, and nobody knew it except for him.

 

It's too bad he couldn't have held onto the house longer because if he sold it during the height of the housing boom he'd probably be in much better financial shape ;)

Edited by mos6507

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