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May 28, 2022

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Zynga stock slips as results come in light as company awaits acquisition by Take-Two

Zynga Inc. shares declined in the extended session Monday after the videogame publisher’s quarterly results came in lighter than Wall Street had expected while the company awaits the close of its acquisition by Take-Two Interactive Software Inc.

Zynga 
ZNGA,
-4.83%
shares slipped 2% after hours, following a 4.8% fall in the regular session to close at $7.69.

As with its earnings report back in February, Zynga will not hold a conference call with analysts or provide an outlook because its pending acquisition by Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. 
TTWO,
-7.11%
is expected to close by the end of June, while some analysts expect late May.

Zynga reported a first-quarter loss of $24.5 million, or 2 cents a share, compared with a loss of $23 million, or 2 cents a share, in the year-ago period.

Revenue rose to $691.2 million from $680.3 million in the year-ago quarter, while bookings declined to $694.9 million from $719.5 million a year ago.

Analysts surveyed by FactSet had forecast a loss of a penny a share on revenue of $736.1 million and bookings of $740.6 million.

The company also reported average mobile daily active users increased by 3% to 40 million from a year ago.

“We started off 2022 with a strong quarterly performance, achieving our highest ever Q1 advertising revenue and bookings led by our hyper-casual portfolio,” Zynga Chief Executive Frank Gibeau said in a statement.

While online gaming revenue slipped to $537.7 million from $557 million a year ago, revenue of Zynga’s fastest-growing segment, built-in game ad revenue, rose to $153.5 million from $123.3 million in the year-ago period. One of the things that Zynga pitches to its advertisers is so -called “watch to earn” ads, where players earn in-game currency or energy for watching the ad to completion.

Back in November, Zynga had forecast “low double-digit” growth for 2022, driven by its live services and full-year contributions of games like “Farmville 3,” which was recently released, “Golf Rival” from its recent acquisition of Beijing-based StarLark, and from Rollic, the Istanbul-based hyper-casual games publisher in which it acquired an 80% stake.