Krafton Rival Hit by Barrage of Rating Cuts as New Game Flops
(Bloomberg) -- Stock analysts are fast turning sour on the outlook for NCSoft Corp. after the South Korean game developer’s highly anticipated new title flopped, causing its shares to plunge.
As many as seven analysts have downgraded ratings on NCSoft while about a dozen, including those at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co., slashed price targets since the Aug. 26 release of Blade & Soul 2 -- a sequel to the firm’s flagship online game launched in 2012. The stock has plunged 24% since to become the worst performer on the Kospi 200 Index, wiping out $3.7 billion in value, data compiled by Bloomberg show.
The martial art-based role-playing game is suffering a “crushing defeat” versus market expectations, Kim Hyunyong, an analyst at Hyundai Motor Securities Co., wrote in an Aug. 30 research note, lowering his price target to 840,000 won from 1.02 million won.
NCSoft, which was the nation’s largest game maker before yielding its crown to Krafton Inc., now has three sell ratings, which are a rarity in South Korea. It still has 24 recommendations to buy and eight to hold.
Read: NCSoft Tumbles Most in Four Years as New Game Title Disappoints
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