Representatives from Activision have preliminarily announced record sales of $313 million for its fourth quarter and $1.51 billion for its fiscal year, on the strength of its Call of Duty, Marvel, Tony Hawk
and Guitar Hero
The $1.51 billion is up from the $1.47 billion Activision saw for its prior fiscal year ended March 31, 2006, and mark what Activision says is 15 consecutive years of revenue growth for the publisher, driven by "better-than-expected consumer response to the company's titles and the strength of the software market overall."
It's fourth quarter sales results were up considerably over last year from $188 million in 2006 to $313 million in 2007, besting even the company's own outlook of $200 million. Activision puts the quarterly results square on the back of Guitar Hero II
and Call of Duty 3
, and says it saw "better-than-expected" performance in its distribution business on the European launch of the PlayStation 3.
Looking forward, Activision also said that, continuing its 15 year streak, it expects its fiscal 2008 sales to exceed $1.6 billion.
Said chairman and CEO Robert Kotick, "Fiscal 2007 net revenues are expected to be the highest in Activision's history. Our results were driven by our proven properties Call of Duty 3, Marvel: Ultimate Alliance
and Tony Hawk's Project 8
; our successful integration of the RedOctane business and expansion of the Guitar Hero
franchise globally; our early leadership position on the next-gen consoles; and the strength of our distribution business. We ended fiscal 2007 as the #2 U.S. third-party publisher, grew our market share in the U.S. and had two of the top 10 best selling U.S. titles, according to The NPD Group."
Activision's revenues are considered preliminary until it properly files its second and third fiscal quarter reports and its fiscal 2007 report, following an ongoing stock option grant investigation
Wedbush Morgan's Michael Pachter and Lazard's Colin Sebastian have commented on the preliminary results.
Sebastian noted that quarterly revenues, up 67 percent over last year were "well ahead of [Lazard's] $225 million estimate and consensus of $214 million," and said that the company "remains well positioned for strong growth in F2008, driven by a robust product release schedule, including F1Q (June) releases Spider-Man 3
and Shrek the Third
, Xbox 360 version of Guitar Hero, Tony Hawk's Downhill Jam
on the PS2."
"Full financial results not expected until late May," Sebastian noted, adding that "the company previously indicated that 4Q results would be significantly impacted by higher legal expenses and professional fees" incurred by the stock options investigation.
Pachter was ebullient on the results, saying "Our positive long-term thesis on Activision is reinforced by the company's recent performance, and we are more bullish than ever about Activision as an investment."
"We believe that the current share price presents a compelling entry point," he said, "and recommend that investors opportunistically add to positions. We view the nearing completion of the options investigation as removing a negative uncertainty and believe that recent sales momentum will carry into FY:08."]