It looks as if Harmonix and Mad Catz can’t quite agree on who’s to blame for the latter’s recent financial losses of $11.6 million, as the two have issued statements that are fairly contradictory.
Following yesterday’s report that Mad Catz had suffered a yearly loss of $11.6 million citing the poor performance of Rock Band 4, or as they put it “Rock Band 4-related challenges,” Harmonix has spoken out to Game Informer claiming that Mad Catz are to blame for their losses due to the inability to keep up with demand during the holiday period.
“Rock Band did well for us, selling within the range we anticipated,” said Harmonix CEO Steve Janiak in a prepared statement. “In fact, many of our retail partners struggled to keep up with demand during the holiday season. With a business like Rock Band that involves hardware, if you are manufacturing that hardware you need to get the inventory levels right – with most of it available at retail in time for the holiday selling season.”
However, Mad Catz posted that they’re currently sitting with around $8 million worth of Rock Band 4 stock that it’s hoping to shift before September. We know that the Xbox One adapter for Rock Band 4 saw shortages, and if Harmonix is correct, it could be that the $8 million worth of hardware arrived after the holiday season, when interest frankly, disappeared.
According to Mad Catz however, that’s not the case and said that retail partners were inundated with hardware to the point of offering the product at a discount.
“As we have publicly disclosed, it was Harmonix who terminated the agreement, under their rights to do so,” said Mad Catz CEO Karen McGinnis. “And, while we agree that it is important to get inventory levels correct for any product, including Rock Band 4, it is clear to us that consumer demand for Rock Band 4 did not meet expectations, resulting in excess inventories not only for Mad Catz, but for our retail partners, as well as discounting in retail prices during and after the holiday season. Looking ahead, we continue to share a vested interest in the success of Rock Band 4.”
Following the release of these two statements, it’s unclear to see who’s really to blame for Mad Catz financial losses, though with Harmonix recently announcing a new hardware partner as well as a continued relationship with Fender, it looks like one company is definitely doing okay for itself.