Goldman Sachs has raised its rating for the shares of Activision Blizzard to account for Diablo 4 and Overwatch 2 releasing in the next couple of years.
According to a report from CNBC earlier this week, the next installment in the Diablo franchise is expected to sell 15 million units. The sequel to Overwatch, though, has a forecast of 20 million units sold within the first year. The previous–current–Diablo 3 sold more than 30 million units in three years, while Overwatch sold more than 16 million units in the first year.
“We are raising our 2019 and 2020 estimates on account of a robust multi year pipeline of games — Diablo, Overwatch 2, and a Blizzard mobile title — which we don’t think Street estimates are fully taking into account,” analyst Christopher Merwin told clients this week.
Blizzard is known to be working on a new Diablo 4 for some time now, despite the absence of an official acknowledgement. It is strongly speculated that an announcement could be made at BlizzCon next year. Hence, it is not surprising to see analysts predicting strong sales for that impending release.
However, it is bizarre to even think that Blizzard will be releasing Overwatch 2 in the next decade, let alone the coming few years. This is because the game is already designed to be expanded with new content with regular updates. There is no reason why there should be a sequel, unless the developer is considering to release a single-player version.
Goldman Sachs estimates that Activision Blizzard will generate earnings of $3.04 per share in 2019 with the help of Diablo 4, and $3.40 in 2020 with Overwatch 2.