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Atari Restructures, Closes Studios


Atari Restructures, Closes Studios

With today’s announcement of dipping third-quarter financial results, Atari has outlined the first phases of its new strategic plan to reduce general and administrative expenses and strengthen its competitive edge in the marketplace. That plan will involve a complete transformation of the senior management team and the closure of two key U.S. publishing studios.

Jim Caparro, who took over as Atari’s president and CEO in late November of 2004, comments, “In a short time, we’ve begun taking aggressive steps to address structural, operational and financial issues which we anticipate will better position the company.”

Caparro says the management shake-up is intended to bring greater focus and establish stricter procedures and practices throughout all of the company’s operations. Recent executive additions include a new CFO.

The company will close its publishing studios in Santa Monica, Calif. and Beverly, Mass., relocating those operations to Atari’s corporate headquarters in New York.

Atari will also be re-examining its product portfolio, choosing to focus more on major money-making products and franchises at the expense of non-core assets. The company will also work to create added value between Atari and its majority shareholder, Infogrames Ent. SA.

Net revenue for Atari’s third quarter was $161.8 million, compared to $190.6 million in the same period last year, and publishing net revenue came in at $143.3 million, compared to $174.4 million. Decreased revenue for the period has been attributed to a lower number of titles released, strong competition and a shortage of console hardware in the marketplace.

Top-selling Atari titles for the quarter included Atari Anthology (PS2, Xbox), Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 3 (PS2), Pirates! (PC), RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 (PC) and the plug-and-play Atari Flashback Classic Game Console. The company’s big fourth quarter releases include Dragon Ball Z: Sagas (PS2, Xbox, GameCube) and DRIV3R (PC).

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