One of the gaming industry’s biggest names, Activision Blizzard, saw a 17% decrease in net revenue over the fourth quarter of the 2019 fiscal year. The company also reported a 13% decline over the full 2019 fiscal year.
Activision Blizzard earned $1.99 Billion USD in the fourth quarter of the year and $6.49 Billion USD over the full year. This is a big decline in revenue, but Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick saw it coming. In 2018, he stated that “2019 would be a transition year”. Blizzard still exceeded its outlook for 2019 despite the revenue decline.
Reasons for Activision Blizzard’s revenue decline
The biggest reason for Activision Blizzard’s revenue decline is the company’s lack of new content in 2019. Their biggest title of the year was Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, which helped spur their fourth-quarter sales. There were also several Hearthstone expansions as well as the usual content updates, but no major titles. Plus, the Warcraft 3 remake has received terrible user reviews, which hasn’t done the company any favors.
Activision Blizzard’s sales were also potentially damaged by the Blitzchung situation earlier in the year. Many fans of the company and their games turned against and boycotted Blizzard over that decision.
Plans for the future
BlizzCon 2019 revealed a lot of new information on future games. Diablo 4, Overwatch 2, and World of Warcraft‘s new Shadowlands expansion all highlight potential 2020 releases. While none of them have confirmed release dates yet, at least one of these titles will likely launch in the coming year.
Activision Blizzard can also bank on another Call of Duty title releasing in the fourth quarter of the 2020 fiscal year. In addition to all these big titles, there are bound to be more Hearthstone expansions to help generate revenue throughout the year.
It seems likely that 2020 will be a bounce-back year for the company. Be on the lookout for these upcoming big titles for the year.