Profits fall 14% at Blizzard Ireland games firm

By Gordon Deegan/b>

Profits at the Irish arm of Blizzard were hit last year as the US giant made no new games releases.

Blizzard Entertainment Ireland employs more than 410 people at its Cork base. Its pre-tax profits fell 14% to €2.17m, as revenues also fell 14% to €23.9m.

The group’s games include World of Warcraft, Heroes of the Storm, Starcraft II, Call of Duty, Black Ops 4, and Diablo III.

The directors attributed the drop in profit to no new game releases in 2017, “which reduced the support centre activity compared to 2016 when there were two significant game releases, being Overwatch and Heroes.”

The average headcount fell to 414 from 446 staff in the previous year. Staff costs fell from €19.38m to €17.76m.

Blizzard said the Irish company continues to widen the services it provides to other companies in the group.

The profit takes account of non-cash depreciation costs of €507,919 while operating lease payments fell from €809,779 to €758,040.

Including accumulated profits of €6.98m, the company’s shareholder funds totalled €9.48m at the end of last year.

The firm’s administrative expenses reduced from €25.32m to €21.77m. After paying corporation tax of almost €301,500, it had a net profit of €1.87m.

“As a management, administration, and technical support centre, the directors are conscious of the necessity to provide superior quality service to the company’s customers,” it said.

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