Activision Blizzard, the US video game publisher being acquired by Microsoft, reported a sharp drop in revenue and profit in the second quarter, but better than Wall Street expected in the context of the economic crisis. The Santa Monica, Calif.-based group posted $1.6 billion in revenue, down 28% year over year. This is the third quarter in a row that its revenues have declined, and the company’s press release said this trend will continue in the second half.
Its net profit was $280 million, a fraction of $876 million in the second quarter of 2021. Sales halved on console and PC, but rose slightly by 5% to $831 million on mobile, driven mainly by Candy Crush. Activision Blizzard says players have spent less time on Call of Duty, one of its successful franchises. The company hopes that the release of a new part in October will rekindle interest in the shooter. These results left the market reeling as analysts had expected weaker earnings.
“Despite a tough economic environment and many companies announcing hiring freezes and layoffs, our development teams grew 25% year-over-year.“Welcome company CEO Bobby Kotick, quoted in the press release. He recalled the recent achievements of the Proletariat studio and the Peltarion company, which specialize in the field of artificial intelligence and automated machine learning. Activision Blizzard has been in regular headlines for a year when a series of discrimination and harassment allegations against management led to layoffs. Since then, employees have mobilized under various banners, including a union, the first within the company.
Microsoft signed a deal to buy the California-based publisher in January for $69 billion, the biggest tech deal ever. The deal is expected to close by June 2023. In June, the computer giant told New Zealand competition regulators that Action Blizzard had no video games.essential“, “which can cause anxiety“.
Source: Le Figaro
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