Activision Blizzard has a lot of good news to share as part of the financial report for the first quarter of 2017. The company increased its global net revenue a 19% from the same period last year, achieving record numbers in Q1 revenue, digital revenue and earnings per share. Overwatch was one of the main contributors, although Hearthstone and World of Warcraft also had positive performances.
As part of the global results for the company, Activision Blizzard’s net revenue in Q1 2017 was $1.73 billion, up 19% from the $1.46 billion obtained in Q1 2016. The company gets most of its financial support from digital channels, which provided a record net revenue of $1.39, which is a stunning 50% up year-over-year.
This global net revenue is divided among consoles ($615 million) PC ($566 million), mobile and ancillary ($475 million) and others ($70 million). Which shows a decline in revenue from consoles in contrast to the growth from all the other sources.
This record digital revenue is unequivocally linked with the fact that the online community of users from Blizzard’s titles amounted to 41 million MAUs (monthly active users), up 58% from Q1 2016 and the biggest ever for a first quarter in the year.
Blizzard revenue from in-game content grew more than 25% thanks mostly to World of Warcraft and Overwatch customization items. The latter was actually one of the most important players in this report, being the fastest franchise to reach 30 million players in less than a year, and becoming the 8th billion dollar brand of the company.
Hearthstone also provided good results, with growing monthly active users from last year despite not releasing new content in Q1 2017. The game also just passed 70 million registered players.
However, the Activision side of the company had 48 million MAUs in Q1, which is down from last year due to the underperformance of Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare. Thankfully, the company is quick to note that this year’s releases Destiny 2 and Call of Duty: WW2 are getting a very strong start on pre-orders, with the latter being particularly better received than Infinite Warfare, which is something we had already discussed.
As for King, the mobile branch of the company, it had 342 million MAUs, down from last year but still keeping two titles inside the US top 10 highest grossing games for the 14th quarter in a row thanks in part to the stability of the Candy Crush franchise. King has also entered publishing partnership with PlayStudios to enter the social casino genre.