Activision Blizzard increases financial expectations following strong Q3

It continues to be a red letter day for publisher Activision Blizzard.

Alongside the announcement of its purchase of Candy Crush firm King, the firm has announced that it made $990m in GAAP net revenue for the quarter ending September 30th 2015. This is up 24 per cent on the $753m made in Q3 2014.

This was largely driven by strong digital sales which generated a record-breaking $629m. Digital revenues made up 67 per cent of the Activision’s total revenue – up 38 per cent year-on-year.

As a result of this strong performance, Activision Blizzard has announced it is increasing its expectations for the year. Before its GAAP outlook was $4.4bn; now it is a $4.5m.

The publisher also revealed some updated stats about its core games.

Destiny now has 25m registered players, and is the most-watched console game on Twitch. In addition, Activision Blizzardboasts that gamers are playing the online shooter for three hours a day on average.

Meanwhile, its Call of Duty franchise saw ‘double digit’ growth due to strong sales of its back catalogue titles, including Black Ops, Black Ops II and Advanced Warfare. Black Ops II, Activision says, is played by some 12m players each month.

Over to Blizzard, and the publisher has revealed that World of Warcraft subscribers stand at 5.5m. Following the launch of expansion The Grand Tournament, Hearthstone’s ‘key engagement metrics’ grew 77 per cent year-on-year and set a new quarterly revenue record.

And 2013’s Diablo III has reached two million units sold in China.

"We continue to benefit from our focus on creating the world’s best interactive entertainment,” Activision Blizzard boss Bobby Kotick said.

Our incredibly talented employees around the world once again delivered great content and strong financial results. Mobile gaming is the largest and fastest-growing opportunity for interactive entertainment and we will have one of the world’s most successful mobile game companies and its talented teams providing great content to new customers, in new geographies throughout the world. King has a truly fantastic management team and over 1,600 incredibly talented employees and we are excited to welcome them into the Activision Blizzard family."

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