Within the Activision Blizzard group, King remains one of the top performers, propelled as usual by their flagship Title Candy Crush, their latest financials have revealed.
Activision Blizzard’s recently released Q2 2023 financial report highlighted the company’s strength on mobile devices, which accounted for 41% of its net revenue. Here we're going to examine the performance of mobile subsidiary King in greater detail. The developer is, of course, responsible for the hit match3 title Candy Crush and is primarily responsible for Activision Blizzard's boost into our Top 50 Mobile Game Makers list in 2022.
The report notes that player investment led to King achieving yet another quarterly net booking record, with net revenue increasing 9% year-on-year. This was driven largely by Candy Crush’s continued success, including its strength in terms of live operations and user acquisition.
The game’s operating income fell slightly year on-year, which the report attributes to increased investment in marketing. The report notest that this investment is expected to see operating income to grow in the coming quarters.
Candy Crush also saw 10% year-on-year growth in net booking and also saw strong growth in terms of both downloads and player investment. This boost was driven in part by the game’s latest All Stars tournament, the first to include contestants from multiple continents. This contest also seems to have led to yet another quarter of year-on-year growth in terms of player numbers.
Notably, Candy Crush also extended its current run as one of the USA’s biggest mobile franchises, being listed as the top-grossing franchise on the country’s app stores for the 24th consecutive quarter.
Mobile is King
Another driver of King’s success in Q2 was the performance of Peltarion, an AI technology company it acquired in June 2022. The company’s machine learning technology is allowing King to accelerate the production and testing of Candy Crush’s live operations, as well as offer more relevant content to players. Additionally, the company is working on incorporating generative AI to help developers accelerate their workflow.
King also saw substantial year-on-year growth in its advertising business, with growth across both direct brand advertisers and partner network. The company’s success in targeting new verticals and the rollout of new advertising formats benefited direct sales, while enhancements to the company’s platform and its success in attracting new partners led to indirect growth.