UK PC games industry: What recession?

£219m spent in Q1

The PC games industry stayed buoyant in the first quarter, with sales up five per cent on the previous year.

Brits spent almost £219 million on computer and video games during the first three months of 2001, according to research by trade association the European Leisure Software Publishers Association (ELSPA).

In terms of volume, this was 10.3 million units - an increase of 24 per cent.

The top selling game was THQ's WWF Smackdown, which sold more than 300,000 units. It was followed by Electronic Arts' FIFA 2001 and Eidos' Championship Manager: Season 00/01, which both shifted more than 200,000 units.

"The growth of the UK leisure software industry is a real British business success story," said ELSPA director general Roger Bennett. "Booming sales demonstrate the strength of this home-grown entertainment sector and lower prices are clearly enabling more consumers than ever to enjoy the huge range of games on offer."

Bennett added that the Sony PlayStation 2 and Nintendo Game Boy had given the market "a real boost", while it was hoped the launch of Microsoft's Xbox and the Nintendo GameCube would continue this upward trend. ®

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