IMO GW plc DEPEND on peoples investment to keep them loyal to GW products.
And because 40k requires such a high investment of time MONEY and effort, many 40k players assume the same is required from other games.
However , this is not the case.
As already mentioned other manufacturers tend to offer much better VFM.
And why not use exiting minature collections as proxies in new rule sets?
As there are quite a few FREE to down load rule sets available.
The cost of trying out new rules with existing your minatures is simply a bit of time and effort.
I would say the finacials are showing fewer people starting 'The GW hobby'(tm).Combined with more veteran players moving on...
GW plc used to produce a range of games and associated minatures.
These were written for gamers of all ages.
They realised great game play KEPT gamers interested for longer.And great game play generated general interest in the large pool of potential gamers of all ages.
However, corperate managment simply decided the 'core games ' were the most profitable games.(Without understanding the 'gateway and fence' function the other games served.They gave people multiple easy ways to get in to GW games, and offered something different to try when people wanted a change of pace.)
And the corperate managment bean counter simply saw that targeting the easiest to please (11 to 16 year olds,) was the easiest way to generate cash short term.And they simply assumed a churn and burn policy would sustain the buisness long term.
But with depending on word of mouth for marketing ,generating 'burned customers at higher frequency ' has an obvious negative impact on consumer percerption.