Activision Blizzard, Inc. (ATVI) stock prices were down by 2.70% as of the market closing on May 4th, 2021, bringing the price per share down to USD$88.69 at the end of the trading day.
Success Through Pandemic
The company far surpassed expectations of its outlook for the first quarter of 2021, exhibiting exceptional growth across ATVI’s largest franchises. Despite the ongoing and prolonged adversities presented by the global covid-19 pandemic, ATVI is leveraged its increased investment into its largest franchise, with creative and commercial teams executing strategies effectively even when working from home.
Surge in Activision’s Revenue
ATVI’s Activision reported revenue growth of 72% compared to the prior-year period, primarily attributable to in-game revenues from the company’s Call of Duty video game lineup, strong premium sales, and capital generated from Call of Duty Mobile. In light of this growth operating income for Activision has more than double as compared to the prior-year period.
Monthly Active Users for the Call of Duty franchise have more than tripled over the past 2 fiscal years with Q1 2021 setting a new record for Activision with reports of 150 million MAUs. Call of Duty MAUs have also grown sequentially, indicating a 40% increase year-over-year. Q1 2021 has also seen the continuation of the pro Call of Duty League, which has experienced substantial year-over-year growth in average minute audience.
Rising Blizzard Revenue
ATVI’s Blizzard segment also enjoyed a year-over-year 7% growth in revenue, largely thanks to their Warcraft franchise. The recently announced World of Warcraft’s Shadowlands expansion has contributed to the significant increase in scale, bringing the MAUs up to 27 million for the first quarter of 2021.
King Sets Record
The company’s King segment also set a new record with its reported revenue for Q1 2021, indicating a 22% year-over-year increase. King has reported a staggering 28 million MAUs in the first quarter of 2021 and experienced a 70% year-over-year increase in advertising net bookings, with similarly significant growth shown across direct brand advertisers as well as partner networks.
Dividends on ATVI Stock
As rewards for investors who were on the record as owning company stock as of market close on April 15th, 2021 the company has opted to implement a cash dividend for its common shares. The payout of USD$0.47 per share of common stock will be payable on May 6th, 2021 indicating a 15% increase from the dividends payable in the fiscal year 2020.
Future Outlook for ATVI
With unprecedented numbers of people being homebound over the course of the pandemic amid government regulations and restrictions, ATVI has enjoyed a substantial increase in player-base and game-times. With stellar financial reports and an upscaled dividend, current and potential investors are hopeful for a sustained trajectory of impressive growth.