Robert W. Baird & Co. analyst Colin Sebastian is excited about the high review scores Grand Theft Auto V is getting and makes a prediction that the game will sell big in its first month at retail. This morning he sent a note to investors saying that his firm expects the latest entry in the popular Grand Theft Auto series to generate $1 billion in sales at retail over its first month of release.
"We expect $1 billion+ retail sales over first month," wrote Sebastian. "At midnight tonight, Take Two releases GTA V, the highly anticipated sequel in the company's blockbuster video game franchise – developed by Rockstar Games in Scotland."
Sebastian goes on to explain why he thinks GTA V will do so well so early on:
"Take Two has shipped roughly 25 million units worldwide of GTA IV, and our checks suggest an uptick in catalog sales in the weeks ahead of tonight's GTA V launch. Given the significantly higher installed base of relevant console platforms at launch, greater sales concentration among the top video game franchises, and unprecedented pentup demand, we expect GTA V to outpace GTA IV sales, and generate roughly $1 billion in retail sales during the first month.."
Finally, Sebastian suggests that strong GTA V sales "bode well" for other key 2013 releases:
"Strong GTA V launch would also bode well for other key 2H releases. We believe that consumer demand for GTA V is a useful yardstick to measure potential sales momentum for other key 2013 releases, most notably Call of Duty Ghosts (ATVI), Battlefield 4 (EA) and Assassin's Creed IV (UbiSoft). Our retail checks suggest that Activision and EA are both aggressively courting GTA buyers to pre-order titles."
You can read Sebastian's full report here.