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Activision Blizzard posts $51m Q3 profit and $745m in revenue

Kotick: "We expect to deliver the most profitable year in our history"

Publisher Activision Blizzard has revealed a net profit of $51 million for the three months ended September 30. This is up from $15 million for the same period last year.

Total revenues reached $745 million, up from 2009's $703 million. The final figure is an increase of $145 million on the publisher's estimates, which it prescribed predominantly to better-than-expected StarCraft II performance and ongoing Call of Duty sales.

For 2010 to date, Activision Blizzard has earned $651 million and brought in revenues of $3.02 billion, up from 2009's $399 million and $2.7 billion respectively.

Said Bobby Kotick, CEO of Activision Blizzard, "For the third quarter, we exceeded our net revenues and earnings per share outlook and delivered strong year-over-year growth.

"Our better-than-expected results are due to our leadership in online entertainment, including strong performance from Activision Publishing's Call of Duty franchise, and Blizzard Entertainment's World of Warcraft and StarCraftII: Wings of Liberty.

"For the nine months ending September 30, 2010, our digital offerings contributed close to half of our total non-GAAP net revenues and our digital revenues have increased more than 15% over the prior year. Most importantly, we continue to deliver some of the world's best games."

"Activision Publishing is about to introduce what is likely to be the biggest entertainment launch of the year with Call of Duty: Black Ops , followed by Blizzard Entertainment's World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, which we believe will deliver an incredible breadth of new content to the world's largest massively multiplayer online role playing game (MMORPG) community.

"As a result of our over-performance, we are raising our calendar year 2010 net revenue and earnings outlook. We expect to deliver the most profitable year in our history with record operating margins."

Activision Blizzard predicts net revenues of $4.28 billion for the entirety of 2010, with $1.26 billion of that expected from Q4 - during which Call of Duty: Black Ops will launch.

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Alec Meer

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A 10-year veteran of scribbling about video games, Alec primarily writes for Rock, Paper, Shotgun, but given any opportunity he will escape his keyboard and mouse ghetto to write about any and all formats.

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