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EA Chief Says In-Game Ad Forecasts Are Wildly Optimistic

Bullish forecasts suggesting that revenue from ads placed within videogames could top $1 billion within three years are wildly optimistic, the chief executive of the world's largest game publisher told Dow Jones on Thursday.

John Riccitiello, head of Electronic Arts Inc., said in-game advertising will eventually emerge as a key source of revenue for videogame publishers, but it will likely take much longer than many in the industry anticipate.

"You can't be as bullish as analysts are on in-game advertising and be sane," he said. "In-game ad expectations are wildly high."

Riccitiello said that, for the moment, in-game ads were a $30 million-a-year business for EA, a tiny fraction of the company's $3.1 billion in sales in fiscal 2007.

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