Year-to-date, Activision Blizzard ATVI, the American video game holding company based in Santa Mónica, California, has outperformed stocks like Meta META, Google GOOGL, Apple AAPL, Amazon AMZN, Nvidia NVDA, Disney DIS and Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK-A).
Activision Blizzard was formed in 2008 through the merger of Activision, one of the largest console video game publishers, and Blizzard, one of the largest PC video game publishers. The combined firm remains one of the world's largest video game publishers.
See also: The Video Game Industry's Acquisition Fever: 2022 Was A Year Full Of Giant Purchases And A Few Disappointments
Moreover, the company is responsible for some of the most popular titles in the gaming world, like “Call of Duty” -which has sold over 175 million copies over 12 years-, “World of Warcraft”- which boasts more than $8 billion of lifetime sales, “Crash Bandicoot”, “Overwatch” and “Diablo.”
At the beginning of 2022, Microsoft MSFT announced its intent to complete one of the largest acquisitions in the history of video games: the company founded by Bill Gates would be taking over Activision-Blizzard in a transaction value at $68.7 billion.
However, this operation needs the approval of national and international regulators, such as the FTC, the European Commission, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority, and Brazil’s Administrative Council for Economic Defense. Just a few days ago, the FTC voted against the deal, but the companies are confident they will be able to make it happen.
Activision CEO Bobby Kotick said in a letter to employees, “I want to reinforce my confidence that this deal will close. The allegation that this deal is anti-competitive doesn't align with the facts, and we believe we'll win this challenge.”
Activision’s most recent moves include the search for potential new partners to continue offering its hit game “World of Warcraft” in China, after the US videogame publisher decided not to renew its 14-year-old deal with NetEase, Inc in November. Furthermore, on December 5, Blizzard Albany’s game testers voted to form a union months after it began negotiating with employees at its Wisconsin unit, the first in the company to unionize in June.
But, what do the analysts have to say about Activision-Blizzard?
Atlantic Equities analyst Kunaal Malde upgraded the company’s stock from Neutral to Overweight on September 15, 2022, but lowered the price target from $95 to $84 (accuracy rate: 27%).
On the other hand, MoffettNathanson analyst Clay Griffin upgraded his rating on the company’s stock from Market Perform to Outperform on July 25, 2022, with a price target of $95 (accuracy rate: 47%).
At the time of the writing of this article:
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