Activision Blizzard posts strong Q1 results as net income jumps 87%
Publisher also forecasts further growth, citing “strong” Diablo 4 pre-sales
Following today’s announcement that the UK’s competition watchdog has blocked Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, the Call of Duty maker has provided investors with some better news.
A day earlier than scheduled, Activision Blizzard released its first quarter earnings results, showing net income for the three months ended on March 31, 2023, was up 87% year-over-year to $740 million.
Revenue was up 35% to $2.38 billion, while net bookings rose 26% to $1.86 billion.
The publisher said the results were driven by growth across all three of its segments (Activision, Blizzard and King), and highlighted the performance of its mobile games business.
“First quarter growth was broad-based, with net bookings increasing year-over-year in each of our five largest intellectual properties: Call of Duty, Candy Crush, Warcraft, Overwatch, and Diablo.
“We continued to deliver strong results for our intellectual properties on the strategically-important mobile platform, with mobile net bookings growing double-digits year-over-year, driven by Candy Crush, Call of Duty Mobile and last year’s launch of Diablo Immortal.”
Activision revenue during the first quarter was up 28% year-over-year, Blizzard revenue increased 62%, and King revenue grew 8%.
Monthly active users during the quarter totalled 368 million, down four million year-over-year, following declines in the Activision (-2m) and King (-7m) segments, partially offset by growth in the Blizzard segment (+5m).
Citing “strong” Diablo 4 pre-sales, the company also forecast significant year-over-year growth for the current quarter ending on June 30.
“Demand indicators for Diablo IV, which launches on June 6, are strong, although we continue to plan prudently,” it said.
“We expect Activision Blizzard second quarter GAAP revenue to grow at least 10%, net bookings to grow at least 30%, and total segment operating income to grow at least 40%, in each case on a year-over-year basis.”
Looking further ahead, the publisher reiterated plans to release “the next full annual premium release” in the Call of Duty series, as well as Call of Duty: Warzone Mobile, later this year.
The next mainline Call of Duty game will reportedly be a continuation of last year’s Modern Warfare 2, developed by Sledgehammer Games.