Activision Blizzard says strong sales lift 3Q results above estimates, hikes outlook

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (AP) — Activision Blizzard Inc., maker of the blockbuster "Call of Duty" video game franchise, said Tuesday that strong sales led to better-than-expected results for its third quarter and raised its full-year forecast. The stock jumped in after-hours trading.

Activision said sales of its "Destiny" and "World of Warcraft" games helped drive adjusted revenue up 78 percent in the three months that ended in September to $1.17 billion. That topped analysts' forecast for $991.8 million, according to Zack's, and last year's revenue of $657 million.

The company gained 7.4 million subscribers to 'World of Warcraft" during the quarter, ahead of its release of "Warlords of Draenor." The company also raised its full-year outlook as it prepares for sales of the latest "Call of Duty" installment which was released Monday.

Activision reported a quarterly loss of $23 million, or 3 cents per share, compared with a profit of $56 million, or 5 cents per share, a year earlier. Excluding one-time items it earned an adjusted profit of 23 cents per share, more than double the average 12-cent estimate of analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research.

Activision Blizzard said that it expects adjusted earnings of 86 cents per share for its fourth quarter on revenue of $2.2 billion. It now expects to earn $1.35 per share on revenue of $4.8 billion. That is up from its prior outlook of $1.29 per share on revenue of $4.7 billion.

Activision Blizzard shares rose over 4 percent to $20.80 in extended trading after the report. The stock closed earlier down 35 cents at $19.95. Its shares have climbed 12 percent since the beginning of the year.


Elements of this story were generated by Automated Insights using data from Zacks Investment Research. ATVI stock research report from Zacks.


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