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Activision Blizzard, the video games giant behind Call of Duty, Candy Crush and World of Warcraft, saw revenues shoot up to a record $8 billion in 2020.
With lockdown forcing families to hunker down at home, the firm reached more than 400 million players — greater than the population of the US.
The company, which is valued at around £50 billion, was further buoyed by the pre-Christmas launch of new consoles XBOX2 and PS5.
More than 100 million people are now playing Call of Duty each month after a bumper year for the combat game whose sales rose more than 40%.
The company reported net revenues of $8.09 billion in 2020, up 25% on 2019 and generating $2.25 billion in operating cash flow.
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Boss Bobby Kotick put part of the firm’s success in the pandemic down to the games providing an opportunity to connect and socialise with friends virtually.
He praised his team for “generating record financial results for our shareholders” saying: “Video games are redefining what it means to interact socially.”
It comes after legendary game developer and Frontier Developments boss, David Braben, told the Standard that new gamers firms are seeing sign up during lockdowns are likely to stay on as consumers.
He said: "I think what we are seeing is an acceleration of what was already happening within the entertainment sector -a lot of screen time moving to interactive time, whether it’s playing games, watching games or talking about games, the whole social side of entertainment where people do things as a group.
“That’s a real positive, so even as the pressure of coronavirus starts to ease, we should see a real set of people staying with games.”
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