The Crisis Economy

In this year’s murky waters, it appears we’re all swiming the fast and threatening currents of the global economic crisis. All around us, various industries are suffering, some more than others, from coldness, dampness or simply lack of direction.

Despite the dangers and mishaps of the global economic flow, some of the swimmers have managed to find the way to ride the black tide in their advantage. One of the industry that seems to thrive these days is the entertainment industry and more specifically the video games market.

I don’t really have numbers from the players in the industry, but I’ve read recently that Activision Blizzard has reported revenues up to 300 percent in the first half of 2009, up to 1.49 mil Euro. Their EBITDA is also riding high waves with an increase of 360 percent, up to 373 mil Euro for the same time period (source: Reuters).

In Romania, since the entertainment industry is not so well developed (people usually entertain themselves in front of the TV and the local media is squirming in a dark water cyclone), motorcyle sales and gambling have recorded growth in the first half of 2009 instead, as reported by the National Institute of Statistics and the Association of Automotive Producers and Importers (source: Money.ro).

Of course, these are not all the industries that managed to harness the power of the black waters of the economic crisis, but are quite an interesting sample as terms of comparison. If the western world makes money out of entertaining people, Romania is making money out of gambling people. Talk about a atypical market, right?

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