Booming bottom line: video game 'Grand Theft Auto V' triggers one big score

NEW YORK, N.Y. – Fuelled by record sales of the video game “Grand Theft Auto V,” Take-Two Interactive Software (NASDAQ:TTWO) is raising its forecast for fiscal 2014 after revenue in the latest quarter quadrupled.

The company says it has sold 29 million units of the latest edition of the “Grand Theft Auto” series, which makes it the fastest selling video game in history.

Take-Two expects revenues to be in the range of US$2.2 billion to $2.3 billion for the year ended March 31, which marks an increase from a forecast of $1.76 billion to $1.9 billion. Earnings are targeted at $3.50 to $3.75 per share, up from $2.25 to $2.50, it said.

The revised outlook was made to “reflect its strong fiscal second-quarter results and positive outlook for the remainder of the year,” the company said in a release.

For the second quarter, the company said non-GAAP financial results were $325.6 million, or $2.49 per share, adjusted to account for a deferral of digital revenue and other items.

The results were better than the $1.71 per share expected by analysts, according to a survey by Thomson Reuters.

Revenue grew to a record US$1.27 billion, compared to $288 million for the same period a year ago.

Rockstar Games’ “Grand Theft Auto V” was released on Sept. 17. The fiscal second quarter ended Sept. 30.

The company says the video game to has grossed more than $800 million in retail sales during the first 24 hours after launch and more than $1 billion in three days.