NEWS - Monday, February 7, 2005

Activision Makes Profit, DOOM Delayed

Activision Posts Record Profit, DOOM Delayed February 7, 2005 - Activision's 2005 third fiscal quarter saw the company posting record profits, according to financials released today. Thanks to high-selling titles like DOOM 3, Call of Duty: Finest Hour, and Tony Hawk's Underground 2, Activision saw net revenues soar 34% to $680.1 million for the quarter ending December 31, 2004, compared to $508.5 million in last year's Q3. Net income rose to $97.3 million, a 26% increase over last year. For the first nine months of its fiscal year, Activision reports $1.2 billion in net revenues, an impressive 53% increase over $784.8 million reported for the same period last year. Despite the cheerful news, Activision has a slight downer for fans of demon-slaying: DOOM 3 for the Xbox and the DOOM 3 PC expansion have both been pushed back to the company's fiscal 2006, which would mean April at the earliest. While neither title had received a solid date, Xbox gamers in particular have been eager for id Software's hot FPS sequel. For its fourth quarter, Activision is leaping directly into the new handheld market, with both Spider-man 2 and Tony Hawk's Underground 2 slated for Sony's new PSP system. In a conference call with investors today, Activision President Ron Doornink revealed the company plans two new Call of Duty titles: "In Fiscal 06, we will launch two new Call of Duty products: one for the PC, and one for the consoles." This presumably refers to Call of Duty 2 for PC, and an otherwise-unannounced console follow-up to Call of Duty: Finest Hour. Activision Chairman and CEO Robert Kotick expressed optimism for the new year. "As we look toward the future, we are very excited about the opportunities ahead," Kotick commented. "The combination of our product slate, the emerging opportunities created by new hardware technologies and the ever increasing installed base of current console hardware should enable us to continue expanding our net revenues, earnings and operating margin." He also offered highlights of what's to come, including a mysterious new IP: "In fiscal 2006, we will release the strongest game slate in our history which includes new versions of our top-selling fiscal 2005 franchises -- Tony Hawk, Spider-Man, Shrek, Call of Duty, DOOM, and X-Men, as well as games based on True Crime, Fantastic Four, Madagascar, Quake, The Movies, and an original new property from Neversoft, the development team behind the Tony Hawk series." Underscoring the record financial numbers, NPD Techworld named Activision the fastest-growing Top 10 PC publisher in the US for 2004. The company's PC market share has grown to 10%, the highest in its history.


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