THQ Nordic
THQ Nordic - Strong Q4 in line with high expectations (Introduce)

2019-02-14 09:32
Q4 in line with ABGSC estimates
Darksiders 3 recoups development and marketing costs
Metro Exodus averaging Metacritic score of 81
Q4 details
THQ reported Q4’18 earnings yesterday, and net sales came in at SEK 1,380.6m, representing a y-o-y growth rate of 441%, which was driven by the acquisition of Koch Media and Darksiders 3 sales. Reported sales were 3.8% above our estimate of SEK 1,330m. Reported EBIT was SEK 152.1m, corresponding to an EBIT margin of 11%, which was 4.6% below our estimated EBIT of SEK 159.3m. Looking specifically at the THQ Nordic games segment, which developed Darksiders 3, reported Q4 sales were SEK 351.9m, which was 4.9% below our estimate of SEK 370m. Management stated that Darksiders 3 sales were in line with management’s expectations and our estimate of SEK 370m was based on a total of 800k copies sold as the game was released in the highly competitive last quarter of 2018. However, the total development and marketing cost for Darksiders 3 has been recouped, according to management.

Acquires Warhorse Studios and 18POINT2
In conjunction with the Q4 earnings, THQ announced two new acquisitions: Warhorse Studios and 18POINT2. Warhorse Studios is a leading game developer based in Prague behind the successful award-winning title Kingdom Come: Deliverance. Net revenues in 2018 amounted to approximately EUR 42m, with an adjusted EBIT of approximately EUR 28m. 18POINT2 is one of Australia’s leading publishing partners of games and products, and net revenues during 2018 amounted to EUR 15.6m and EBIT totalled EUR 2.3m.

Metro Exodus set to be released on February 15
Looking ahead, all eyes are on the release of Metro Exodus on February 15. Reviews have begun to emerge on Metacritic and the game is currently trending above a score of 80 on all platforms, with PC leading the race with a score of 84. The previous instalment in the Metro universe totalled 1.5m copies sold, a figure which Metro Exodus could very well reach if the positive reviews continue.

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