Australian retailers are facing the prospect of running out of the Xbox retail bundle "The Beast Entertainment Pack," before Christmas.
The success of the Beast Pack, which contains an Xbox, two controllers, a DVD remote and two games (Midtown Madness 3 and Brute Force), saw Xbox record its highest market share for 2003, reaching 40 percent of the next generation console market during the last week of November. However, Sony’s PlayStation2 remains clearly in the lead, and by Christmas the PS2 is expected to rack up sales of 1.1 million in Australia.
Thanks to some heavy advertising, The Beast Pack had already sold in excess of 35,000 units after being on sale less than a month. If the strong sales trends continue retailers are likely to sell out before the end of the Christmas buying period.
“Consumers are buying up early this year, and are spending up big with entertainment bundles like The Beast,” said Target senior buyer, Scott White. “It’s been quite phenomenal to have this massive spend so early on, we’re expecting big things for December as a consequence.”
In the last two years the video games industry has experienced an incredible upsurge in sales during the late November/December period. Last year, the Christmas retail period accounted for approximately 36 percent of the estimated $816 million spent by Australians in the sector, according to GfK Marketing Services.
“Sales of the Beast Pack have exceeded expectations and initial indications point towards us surpassing our record breaking sales during the same time last year,” said David McLean, regional manager Xbox.
The Beast Entertainment Pack retails for $369.