Officials from Paris-based media, music and telecom conglomerate Vivendi have announced results for the second quarter of 2006, which included a 12.1% increase in profits, partly thanks in part to Blizzard’s phenomenally successful MMORPG, World of Warcraft
Overall, the company's revenues were €4.824 billion ($6.12 billion), up from €4.585 billion ($5.82 billion) the previous year, and profits before interest and tax spiked up to €1.298 billion ($1.65 billion) from €1.158 billion ($1.47 billion) in the previous year - with WoW
and the company's Canal+ television Group particularly singled out.
Specifically, the earnings for the Vivendi Games division for the three months ended June 30 were €162 million ($205.6 million), a 29.6 percent increase from the €125 million ($158.7 million) reported over the same period last year. Profits before interest and tax considerations for the division were €39 million ($49.5 million), up from €5 million ($6.35 million) the previous year.
The company noted that the overall jump was driven by a growth in revenues, with an increased proportion of these attributed to World of Warcraft
. However, representatives from Vivendi Games also conveyed that earnings were affected by “start up investments” for its Sierra Online and Vivendi Games Mobile divisions.
Vivendi's net overall income for the second quarter climbed to an impressive €1.16 billion ($1.48 billion), up from €756 million ($960 million) in prior year. The company also reiterated its guidance for the remainder of the year, indicating that it anticipates adjusted net income to increase by "at least" 16 per cent.
Commenting on the company's performance throughout the first half of 2006, Jean-Bernard Levy, chairman of Vivendi's management board stated, “In the first half of 2006, Vivendi once again achieved substantial improvement in operating performance, thereby demonstrating that it has been pursuing the right strategy. This was true of all our businesses, in terms of both revenue and earnings.”
He added that ongoing merger between Canal Plus and TPS “will enable us to build a top-ranked player in French pay-TV under our exclusive control,” and that the company is “in a strong position to leverage the growing consumer demand for entertainment and services made possible by broadband Internet and mobile telecommunications.”