Thu, Nov. 5, 3:41 PM
- Following earnings yesterday, King Digital Entertainment (NYSE:KING) isn't budging far from the agreed $18/share acquisition price it's getting from Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI), up 0.4% today to $17.83.
- Still, a decline in users and gross bookings (not to mention the increasing certainty of an acquisition near target prices) led to downgrades. Stifel Nicolaus cut its rating on the stock to Hold, from Buy, and Cowen downgraded it to Market Perform.
- Wedbush's Michael Pachter downgraded the stock to Neutral as well, from Outperform. His price target for the stock is the same as the deal price, $18.
- “Based on King’s brief history, it appears to us that the company is intent upon exceeding the high end of guidance, suggesting that Q4 bookings will be sequentially flat," he says of a Q4 outlook for $475M-$500M in bookings.
- He also had an upbeat comment on the company's two planned games for next year: “We expect King’s foray into the world of mid-core player vs. player games to yield positive results."
- Previously: King Digital profit rises as it continues milking 'Candy'; users decline (Nov. 04 2015)
- Previously: Activision +2.7% as analysts boost targets on King deal (Nov. 04 2015)
- Previously: ATVI down -2.8% after 'steal' in King deal; GLUU, ZNGA higher (Nov. 03 2015)
- Previously: Activision Blizzard to acquire King Digital for $5.9B (Nov. 02 2015)
Wed, Nov. 4, 5:04 PM
- Fresh off news that it's getting acquired by Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI), King Digital Entertainment (KING -0.5%) posted a solid Q3 on profits and revenues thanks to a few moneymaking hits.
- Gross bookings were $502M, down $27M (5%) from Q2 and down 8% Y/Y. Some 82% ($414M) of gross bookings came from the mobile audience. Adjusted EBITDA of $180M beat an expected $158.3M.
- Candy Crush Saga and Candy Crush Soda Saga were ranked in the top 5 grossing games in the Apple and Google stores for the third straight quarter.
- Users declined across the board, however. Monthly active users fell to 474M from a year-ago 495M, and daily active users slipped to 133M from 137M.
- Meanwhile, monthly unique users fell to 330M from 348M, and monthly unique payers fell to 6.85M from 8.67M. Monthly gross average bookings per paying users rose to $24.45 from $20.92, and the company said it saw a higher portion of payers paying in more than one game.
- It's guiding to gross bookings of $475M-$500M in Q4. Shares were inactive after hours.
- Press Release
Mon, Nov. 2, 11:20 PM
- Along with an announcement that it's buying King Digital for $5.9B, Activision (NASDAQ:ATVI) posted Q3 results that were an across-the-board beat featuring its highest ever Q3 operating income.
- Non-GAAP EPS was down slightly from last year, to $0.21 from a prior $0.23, beating an expected $0.16. Non-GAAP net revenues of $1.04B were down slightly but also soundly beat expectations of $951.2M.
- Net revenues from digital channels were a record $697M, up 38% Y/Y and representing a full 67% of total revenues.
- The company boosted full-year 2015 guidance as well, now seeing net revenues of $4.65B (vs. an expected $4.66B), up from $4.6B, and EPS of $1.31 (vs. an expected $1.34), up from $1.30. For Q4, it's expecting non-GAAP net revenues of $2.148B and EPS of $0.82.
- A conference call is set for 8 a.m. ET tomorrow to discuss earnings and its acquisition of King Digital; its previous call set for 4:30 p.m. ET tomorrow is canceled.
- Press release
Mon, Nov. 2, 5:35 PM
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Wed, Aug. 5, 11:33 AM
- Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) is up 12.9% -- and hitting its all-time high, at $29.01 -- amid a blizzard of price target hikes from analysts after it posted record Q2 revenues and raised its 2015 guidance.
- Mizuho, Jefferies Group and MKM Partners all raised their price targets, to $31, $32 and $33 respectively. That's an upside of 6.9% to 13.8% from today's already-boosted price, depending on whom you're asking.
- The company is taking its key titles to Gamescom 2015 in Cologne, Germany, which opens to press today and to consumers tomorrow. Call of Duty: Black Ops III, Destiny: The Taken King and Guitar Hero Live will be playable at the company's booth.
- Previously: Activision Blizzard up 7.1% after beat, raised outlook (Aug. 04 2015)
- Related: Activision Blizzard (ATVI) Robert A. Kotick on Q2 2015 Results - Earnings Call Transcript (Aug. 04 2015)
Tue, Aug. 4, 4:26 PM
- Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) is up 7.1% after hours following a solid beat, with record Q2 revenues, and raised its outlook for the rest of 2015.
- Digital revenues hit a record in GAAP and non-GAAP terms. Monthly active users were up 35% Y/Y, and time spent playing the games was up 25%.
- Revenue breakout (GAAP): Product sales, $528M (down 10%); Subscription, licensing and other, $516M (up 34.7%).
- The company's guiding to Q3 revenues (non-GAAP) of $930M, ahead of analyst expectations for $866M and EPS of $0.14, in line. It's also boosting its calendar-year 2015 outlook: on revenues, to $4.6B from $4.425B, and EPS of $1.30, up from $1.20.
- It said Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft, Heroes of the Storm and Destiny now have more than 70M registered players combined and more than $1.25B in non-GAAP revenues to date.
- Conference call to come at 4:30 p.m. ET.
- Press release
Tue, Aug. 4, 4:17 PM
Mon, Aug. 3, 5:35 PM
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Thu, May 7, 3:14 PM
- After trading lower in after-hours action and today's premarket following yesterday's Q1 earnings report, Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) has risen 5.1% in today's trade as analysts look to game momentum and raise price targets.
- Q1 got a boost from the company's franchise successes in Call of Duty and Hearthstone, and now eyes turn to the June 2 release of Heroes of the Storm, Blizzard's response to Riot Games' League of Legends and an entry into a lucrative "multiplayer online battle arena" genre.
- The company provided some light Q2 guidance, but that could turn around depending on the new game, which is free to play but features in-game payments to unlock items, and which has 11M signups for a closed beta test.
- Baird, Cowen, Piper Jaffray, Barclays and Sterne Agee CRT all raised price targets to $27. Shares are trading today at $24.38.
- On the company's earnings call, it hinted at aggressive plans for content around its Destiny release, including "content being dropped throughout the summer" and "then in the fall we will have a major release, which will be the biggest addition to the universe yet, across all modes of play." The company claims 20M registered players for Destiny.
- Piper's Michael Olson points to recent and upcoming releases, including a new Guitar Hero and the Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 entry in November: "Management has historically under-promised and over-delivered."
Wed, May 6, 4:29 PM
- Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) is 1.1% lower in postmarket trading after Q1 earnings where it beat on top and bottom lines but guided below consensus for Q2 results.
- Net revenue (GAAP) breakout: Product sales, $784M (up 1.95%); Subscription, licensing and other, $494M (up 44%). On a non-GAAP basis, net revenue from digital channels rose to a first-quarter record of $538M (76% of total revenues).
- The company is guiding to Q2 net revenues of $650M, vs $688.4M consensus, and adjusted EPS of $0.07 vs. a consensus of $0.08. For full 2015, its outlook has net revenues of $4.425B (vs. consensus of $4.435B) and EPS of $1.20 vs. consensus of $1.18.
- Shares jumped into the close, +2.2% on heavy (very late) volume, before the postmarket decline.
- Conference call at 4:30 p.m. ET.
- Press Release
Wed, May 6, 4:10 PM
Tue, May 5, 5:35 PM
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Fri, Feb. 6, 12:27 PM
- Off sharply yesterday after posting mixed Q4 results and offering soft Q1/2015 guidance, Activision (ATVI +1.4%) has erased its losses and then some today.
- Sell-side defenses of the game giant are helping its cause. Wedbush's Michael Pachter: "The company has historically been exceedingly conservative with its guidance, and over the last ten years, has consistently beaten the expectations it sets early in the year ... this year is no different."
- Pachter notes the guidance assumes no contribution from StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void or a still-unnamed title from Activision Publishing, only small contributions from Call of Duty Online and Heroes of the Storm, and flat Call of Duty and Skylanders revenue. He thinks there could be as much as $750M in upside to full-year guidance.
- Brean's Todd Mitchell observes forex and a higher tax rate contributed to the guidance. "While Activision is known for its conservative guidance, it seems exaggerated for 2015 in light of the potential for strong sell through of its major franchises, the positive feedback loop of scale for [downloadable content] including an alluded "mega" digital content offering for Destiny, and strong prospects for Blizzard's free-to-play title."
- In addition, Mitchell expects "the PS4/Xbox One console base to continue to outpace the prior-gen cycle throughout 2015, accelerating consumer preferences towards digital transactions and further consolidating the industry around blockbuster AAA franchises, a segment which Activision now dominates."
- On the CC (transcript), Activision Publishing chief Eric Hirshberg disclosed Destiny "now has over 16 million registered users with a massive audience of active players still averaging over 3 hours of game play per day." Blizzard chief Michael Morhaime mentioned Hearthstone now has over 25M registered users.
Thu, Feb. 5, 6:34 PM
- Activision (NASDAQ:ATVI) expects Q1 revenue of $640M and EPS of $0.05, well below a consensus of $777.7M and $0.18. Full-year guidance (harder to project for a game developer) is for revenue of $4.4B and EPS of $1.15, below a consensus of $4.71B and $1.15.
- The board has authorized a new $750M buyback program. It lasts through Feb. 2017, and is good for repurchasing 5% of shares at current levels. Activision also plans to pay off a $250M term loan; the company had $4.3B in debt at the end of Q4, and $4.8B in cash.
- Thanks to the launch of the Warlords of Draenor expansion pack, the World of Warcraft subscriber base was above 10M at the end of 2014, up from 7.4M at the end of Q3.
- The expansion pack drove a 98% Y/Y increase in online revenue to $398M. However, console revenue fell 15% to $1.22B, thanks to a 48% drop in prior-gen console revenue to $599M; next-gen console revenue more than doubled to $630M. PC game revenue rose 14% to $127M; mobile/other revenue fell 18% to $269M; and distribution revenue rose 6% to $190M.
- 31% and 46% of Q4 and full-year revenue respectively came from digital channels, up from 16% and 36% a year earlier. Q4 GAAP R&D spend fell 7% to $184M, and sales/marketing 3% to $247M.
- Shares have fallen to $20.05 AH.
- Q4 results, PR
Thu, Feb. 5, 4:22 PM
Wed, Feb. 4, 5:35 PM
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Activision Blizzard Inc is an online, personal computer, video game console, tablet, handheld, and mobile game publisher. It has three operating segments: - Activision Publishing, Inc., Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. and Activision Blizzard Distribution.
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