Activision-Blizzard has reported strong results for both the final quarter of 2011, and all of 2011 today. The company had revenue of $1.407b in the December 2011 quarter, down $20m from the previous December quarter. Profit jumped to $99m in the December 2011 quarter, from a $233m loss in the previous December even with some revenue deferred into the next quarter both times.
For the year ending December 2011, Activision-Blizzard made a staggering amount of money for a third party publisher - $4.755b in revenue with profit of $1.085b. During the 2010 year, revenue had reached $4.447b, with 'only' $418m in profit.
Activision-Blizzard expects revenue to reach $4.15b in 2012, down 13% from 2011. Profit is projected to reach $725m for the year down a third from 2011. In the March 2012 quarter, revenue is forecast to tally $965m, with profit coming to about $253m. Much of the Q1 2012 revenue (on a GAAP basis), around $440m it looks like, will have been the money pushed from late 2011 into early 2012.
Activision-Blizzard highlights for the quarter and the year included:
- World of Warcraft is the largest subscription MMO, with 10.2m users.
- Call of Duty Elite (another subscription service) has 7m registered users, including 1.5m premium registered users.
- Over $1.6b in digital revenue in the US & Europe making Activision-Blizzard the largest third party for digital in both regions. Digital revenue grew to over 1/3 of total revenue in 2011, a higher share than 2009-2010.
- Annual GAAP revenue beat the original forecast by 20%, with profit beating the initial forecast by over 60%.
- The company also believes it can turn Skylanders into a billion-dollar franchise given how the first game has performed so far.
Activision-Blizzard also provided quarterly revenue breakdowns for Oct-Dec 2011 as compared to the previous December quarter:
- Revenue increased on Wii from Q4 2010 to Q4 2011, rising from $141m to $166m - mainly on Skylanders. Revenue also increased for X360, growing to $300m from $281m. 3DS grew to $26m from nothing, and PS3 remained flat at $259m both quarters. Console revenue increased 6% overall vs. late 2010, with portable revenue up 2%.
- PC & Other revenue dipped to $123m in Q4 2011 from $124m in Q4 2010. Online subcriptions (MMO & COD elite mostly) fell pretty substantially to $268m from $340m. PSP and PS2 each fell to $3m from $6m in the prior December quarter. DS declined to $56m from $77m as well.
As the December quarter was not only the end of Activision's fiscal year, but the actual year, it is worthwhile to look at where the company earned its revenue in 2010 and 2011:
- Revenue increased in 2010 to 2011 on X360 growing from $1.033b to $1.140b, PS3 grew from $854m to $935m, online subscriptions (MMOs & COD Elite memberships mostly) grew from $1.230b to $1.357b, PC & Other grew to $374m from $325m, and 3DS grew to $35m from nothing. European revenue also increased slightly in 2011, to $605m from $600m. Console revenue increased 5% overall against 2010 over the entirety of 2011.
- Revenue declined in 2011 for Wii, which fell to $351m from $408m in 2010, for PS2 which fell to $13m from $35m in 2010, PSP which fell from $16m to $15m, and DS which fell from $168m to $117m. North American revenue dropped to $718m from $734m, with Asia-Pacific revenue down to $84m from $93m. Portable revenue fell 9% in 2011 against 2010, despite the increase in Q4 2011 as compared to Q4 2010.
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