Games Workshop Posts Annual Report

By Polar_Bear
In Games Workshop
Aug 4th, 2015

One interesting story I heard about while at Gen Con was the apparent deportation of the Games Workshop staff that’d come to town for the show. Apparently, when they said, “We’re here to work at Gen Con,” the customs official said, “Oh? Here to work? Where’s your work visas, then?” To which there was a bit of mumbling and eventually the sending of them home again. Now, I don’t have documentation of that, only what I heard “through the grapevine.” So take it with a grain of salt. In other Games Workshop news, they’ve posted up their Annual Report to investors.

Yeah, I wasn’t sure how to make a news story about investor reports interesting at the start, so I threw in that story from Gen Con. But to the report, itself, which you can read all of it in .pdf format, it is… a bunch of back and forth in somewhat legal-ese that I’m not very adept at reading. But it seems that sales were up slightly over the year. There’s been some decline in sales in Europe due to the restructuring, but it sounds like sales were up in the US, Australia, and New Zealand. GW was also successful in reducing costs, overall, due to the restructuring.

I do want to share one quote from the report that I found interesting.
“Before I go into what each key element is I’d like to share a thought. I believe we are a unique business and I understand that some people find us and our product a little odd and possibly a little quirky too. We are both of these and we are proud of it. I also know I am CEO of one of the most exciting companies creating fun on the planet. We forget most days because we are all focused on delivering our jobs. Our Hobby is great fun. We really do intend to be around forever, creating fun.”


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I was born at a very young age. I plan on living forever. So far, so good.
  • BDUB

    This is the sentence that struck me. “Gross margin declined in the period due to a decline in sales volumes and increased development costs due to the release of more new products.”

    A decline in sales volumes during an increase in new products? Its like saying we sold fewer apples because we spent money offering a larger variety of fruit. Ah, whut?

    • Odinsgrandson

      There are a few things I don’t quite understand here, but from what I can tell, this is what’s going on:

      The Revenue (gross profit) is down about 4.4 million pounds.

      Operating Profit (net) is up about 4 million.

      So- the company brought in less money, but was able to spend a great deal less money this year as well, such that the profits are up for the year.

      Also, the profits per share are 38.2 pence, but they’re paying a dividend of 52 pence per share. So they’re paying out a larger dividend than they made in profit this year? Maybe they can afford that since they didn’t pay out a dividend last year?

      Now, I’m not an accountant, and this document looks pretty obtuse to me, so please let me know if I’m reading this wrong.

      • CaulynDarr

        The operating profit is up because last year had both the new website and Chapterhouse lawsuit eating into their overhead. That’s how they could sell less this year and and still make slightly more money. Currency exchange rates helped them out this year two.

        And yes they payed out a dividend that cut into their cash reserves. At the same time they also instituted a salary freeze. Must be a great time to be a drone at GW HQ these days.

        • crazytuco

          I thought they paid their workforce in styrene.

          • estrus

            I thought the workforce paid them!

          • miniwar monger

            I thought chinese workslaves dont get paid at all ?

          • doughouseman

            They make most of their product in the UK and in Memphis in the US. Very little (other than boxes) is made in other locations. If you are even in Memphis, going to the GW headquarters will give you an idea of how big the operation is.
            The last time I got a tour was 4 years ago, they had 3 large molding machines to make product, all very automated.
            The interesting thing was how much dead inventory they had in the tops of the storage racks. Probably 40% of the shelf space had obvious dead inventory in it. Including a large number of spin casting machines.

          • zemlod

            The new terrain kits are all “Made in China” and sadly, it’s obvious in the quality drop. Not as spectacularly bad as the moon crater set, but not as good as the last round of fantasy terrain (Skullvane, Garden of Morr, Watchtower etc.).

          • Odinsgrandson

            Really? That’s a big shift for Gee-dub

    • kevinharoun

      The products could be developed, but not yet shipped. Not a big deal.

  • Kavinay Kishor

    I always get chills down my spine when GW refers to “Hobby” with capital letters. It’s just a variety tabletop wargaming, not an all-powerful corporate franchise.

    • estrus

      All your Hobby are belong to us!

      • TomOakheart

        I c wut u did thar.