Pandemic helps Angry Birds maker's profits take wing

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Aug 15 2020 09:11 AM


HELSINKI - Finland's Rovio reported Friday that quarterly game revenue climbed to a record 66.9 million euros ($79 million) as people stuck in coronavirus lockdowns spent more time playing its leading title Angry Birds.

That helped drive a nearly three-fold increase in second-quarter operating profit to 14.1 million euros at the developer of mobile games centered on belligerent fowl.

Rovio's most popular game, Angry Birds 2, saw a 15 percent increase in revenue on the previous quarter to 28.8 million euros, up nine percent year-on-year, as the pandemic confined millions of people around the world to their homes in spring.

"The overall impact of COVID-19, which was visible in a higher level of downloads, daily active users and player engagement, peaked late April," CEO Kati Levoranta said in a statement, adding that these levels started returning to normal from May onwards.

The firm did not issue full-year guidance but said it aims to launch up to three new games this year, including the narrative puzzle game Small Town Murders released in June.

The first half of the year also spurred the firm's other media content, with The Angry Birds Movie 2 among the most-watched films on Netflix during the spring, Rovio said.

The original film, in 2016, helped revive the game-maker's fortunes after Rovio laid off one-third of its employees in 2015.

Rovio's share price rose around six percent in early afternoon trading on the Helsinki stock exchange, reaching its highest level since August 2019.