Profile: Activision Blizzard Inc (ATVI.O)
17 Apr 2014
Activision, Inc. (Activision Blizzard), incorporated in 1979, is a worldwide publisher of online, personal computer (PC), console, handheld, and mobile interactive entertainment products. The Company operates in three segments: Activision Publishing, Inc. (Activision) and its subsidiaries engaged in publishing interactive entertainment software products and downloadable content; Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. (Blizzard) and its subsidiaries engaged in publishing real-time strategy, role-playing PC games and online subscription-based games in the multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) category, and Activision Blizzard Distribution engaged in distributing interactive entertainment software and hardware products (Distribution). In October 2013, ASAC II LP raised its stake to 24.9% from 9.512%, by acquiring a further 15.388% interest in Activision Blizzard Inc from Vivendi SA.
The Company’s Activision business involves the development, marketing, and sale of products through retail channels or digital downloads, by license or from the Company’s affiliate label program with certain third-party publishers. Activision offers games that operate on the Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (Sony) PlayStation 3 (PS3), Nintendo Co. Ltd. (Nintendo) Wii (Wii), and Microsoft Corporation (Microsoft) Xbox 360 (Xbox 360) console systems; the Nintendo Dual Screen (DS) handheld game systems; the PC; Apple iOS devices and other handheld and mobile devices. Activision also develops products spanning other genres, including first-person action, action/adventure, role-playing, simulation and strategy. The Company’s products are available for sale or rental in thousands of retail outlets in North America. Its North American retail customers include, among others, Best Buy, GameStop, Target, Toys R Us and Wal-Mart. In addition to its own products, the Company distributes a number of interactive entertainment products that are developed and marketed by other third-party publishers through its affiliate label programs in North America, Europe, and the Asia Pacific region.
Blizzard is the development studio and publisher known as the creator of World of Warcraft, as well as Diablo and StarCraft franchises. Blizzard distributes its products and generates revenues worldwide through various means, including: subscriptions (which consist of fees from individuals playing World of Warcraft, including sales of prepaid-cards and other value-added service revenues, such as realm transfers, faction changes, and other character customizations within World of Warcraft gameplay); retail sales of physical boxed products; online download sales of PC products, and licensing of software to third-party or related party companies that distribute World of Warcraft and StarCraft II products. Blizzard has released three expansion packs to World of Warcraft: World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade, World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King, and World of Warcraft: Cataclysm. Blizzard also develops and publishes PC-based computer games and maintains its online-game related service, Battle.net. As of December 31, 2011, approximately 10.2 million gamers worldwide were subscribed to play Blizzard's World of Warcraft. World of Warcraft is available in various languages based on the regions in which it is played. Revenues associated with the World of Warcraft franchises accounted for 90% of Blizzard's consolidated net revenue during the year ended December 31, 2011, respectively.
The Activision Blizzard Distribution business consists of operations in Europe that provide warehousing, logistical, and sales distribution services to third-party publishers of interactive entertainment software, its publishing operations, and manufacturers of interactive entertainment hardware. The Company distributes interactive entertainment hardware and software products in Europe through its European distribution subsidiaries, Centresoft in the United Kingdom and NBG in Germany. These subsidiaries act as wholesalers in the distribution of products and also provide packaging, logistical and sales services. They provide services to the Company’s publishing operations and to various third-party publishers, including Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft.
The Company competes with Sony Computer Entertainment Inc., Nintendo Co. Ltd., Apple and Microsoft Corporation.
Activision Blizzard Inc
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