Is Activision Blizzard planning to make a move into consumer products?
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Is Activision Blizzard planning to make a move into consumer products?

Activision Blizzard had a phenomenal 2017, seeing its share price rise by nearly 80% - but that could just be the tip of the iceberg. In recent years, the company has been at the forefront of the video game industry: it’s a leader in the nascent eSports market, and along with peers (Electronic Arts, Take Two Interactive) is benefitting hugely from the industry’s shift to digital downloads. Now, the company could have something else on its mind: consumer products.

Activision Blizzard’s 2017 saw its share price appreciate by 78%

graph 0103 activision

SOURCE: Yahoo Finance

Activision has already made a few moves in this area. If you want an Overwatch mouse mat, or a Candy Crush themed ice cream, you won’t struggle to find them. But these throwaway products are just the first realisations of what could be a billion dollar consumer product empire. Activision Blizzard has some of the most bankable intellectual properties on the planet.

The first big example of these properties’ ability to take flight beyond the world from which they came was, perhaps, 2016’s Angry Birds (the film, that is, not the mobile game). Raking in $350 million at the box office, a sequel is already in the works. And Activision Blizzard is also planning to turn its flagship franchise – Call of Duty – into a cinematic property too.

Increasingly, the company looks like it has the ambition – and the means – to turn its eight-billion dollar franchises into something greater – extended universes of products that encompass everything from video games to film, TV, branded clothing, action figures, eSports leagues and more. Could Activision Blizzard become the world’s most dominant entertainment company, a kind of Disney for the 21st century?

Disclosure

Dominion holds Activision Blizzard in its Global Trends Ecommerce Fund.    

 


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