Too many DS products on the market, says Koch CEO

CEO of Koch Media, Dr Klemens Kundratitz, has expressed his concern at the number of casual and DS titles battling it out in the run up to Christmas, and his belief that this could lead to pricing for DS titles dropping as competition rises.

"We're all faced with too much casual and DS product between now and Christmas, so we're also the victim of that," he said at Game Connection in Lyon. "But I think that in spite of the economic worries we as an industry can be quite confident that we're not affected in too abrupt a way.

"However, I have my worries about the street pricing of Nintendo DS products for next year, and I hope that we aren't seeing companies that have overcommitted on this platform, and are slashing prices - thereby making the business model unattractive for everybody."

However, although Kundratitz admitted that the popularity of the DS platform was inevitable, he showed no worries about Koch Media struggling with competition, stating the company would be taking advantage of its distribution connections to ensure good retail placements for its games.

"It's a free economy, everybody makes their own assumptions, and if a platform is so enormously successful, everybody wants to have a piece of the action," he said. "In hindsight you're always wiser, but it's not something that anybody could have foreseen.

"I think I would be in a much more nervous state right now if I had to rely on third party partners to put my products on the shelves. It's always been my viewpoint that you need to have the channels open in the key markets, and once we have those channels open - and that's now including Spain since the summer, and now also in the US - you can then invest in long term projects and strong products.

"In times where shelf space comes at a premium it's always those companies with the better retail contacts which will benefit. That will also be part of the consolidation, that people without that strength and reputation of being a reliable partner for retail will have it more difficult."