Candy Crush creator King sees finances tumble in 2015

Newly Activision-owned studio’s profit drops 10 per cent as revenue similarly falls 12 per cent
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A record $5.9 billion buy-out by Activision was just about the only positive number for King last year.

The Candy Crush studio has revealed its latest financials, which show that annual profit for 2015 dropped by a tenth to land at $517 million.

Meanwhile, revenues were down 12 per cent to $2 billion. Total gross bookings were also lower, falling 10 per cent to $2.1 billion.

The fall in finances is due to an overall lapse in popularity, however. Games such as Candy Crush and its spin-offs, Soda Saga and Jelly Saga, continue to rank highly in the iOS and Android marketplaces.

"Our fourth quarter 2015 results reflect our continued execution on our franchise strategy,” King CEO Riccardo Zacconi offered in response to the results.

“For the fourth consecutive quarter, both Candy Crush Saga and Candy Crush Soda Saga continued to rank within the Top Five grossing games in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store in the US.”

In Q4 alone, King’s revenue fell 16 per cent to $416 million, profit dropped by more than a third (36 per cent) to $91 million and bookings were also down, shrinking 13 per cent to $509 million.

"The year-over-year decreases in both gross bookings and revenue were primarily due to lower gross bookings from our more mature games, in particular Candy Crush Saga, partially offset by increased gross bookings from our newer games, in particular Candy Crush Soda Saga,” King said in a statement.

“Additionally, no new franchise games were launched in 2015, as compared to three franchise games launched in the prior year. New franchise games tend to offset declines in our more mature games.

“The decrease in revenue also reflects a higher sales tax related to the value added tax legislation in the European Union effective in 2015, and sales tax provision reductions in other jurisdictions in 2014."

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