Activision Blizzard quarterly revenue exceeds expectations

Activision Blizzard has announced financial results for Q3 2013, reporting revenue of $691m for the period.

The figure is down from the $841m earned during the same period last year, but still exceeded the publisher’s expectations of $635m.

Revenue from digital channels pulled much of the weight, bringing in $409m for the quarter. The amount represents a record 59 per cent of total Q3 revenue.

World of Warcraft dropped from 7.7m to 7.6m subs between Q2 and Q3, a much slighter decline compared to the 1.3m drop between Q1 and Q2.

Activation also stated that the sell-in for Call of Duty: Ghosts hasn’t reached Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 launch numbers. The firm attributes this to players holding out for the next-gen console releases later this month.

Our third-quarter results exceeded our expectations, and we are able to raise our outlook for 2013 net revenues and earnings per share,” CEO Bobby Kotick said.

"Robust continued engagement with our core franchises drove digital revenue, which constituted a majority of all revenue. This quarter demonstrates that games like Call of Duty and World of Warcraft engage and entertain our fans year round.

We recently released new titles in two of the most popular franchises in entertainment, Call of Duty: Ghosts and Skylanders SWAP Force. We are thrilled by the quality of those games and we are excited to show what we can do with them on next generation consoles in the coming weeks. We are also in the process of a beta launch for our first major free-to-play game, Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft.

"However, we continue to believe that the fourth quarter this year presents a unique and challenging landscape due to increased competition and uncertainties surrounding the console transition. We are confident in our ability to navigate these challenges successfully, particularly in light of the recent completion of our transaction with Vivendi and the focus and flexibility provided by our return to independence.”

In a call to investors, Kotick added the firm’s 2014 plans include releasing new content for World of Warcraft, Skylanders, and Call of Duty; as well as the launch of Bungie’s Destiny.

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