Nexon Co., Ltd. (3659.T, Nexon) announced record-breaking revenue for the first quarter of 2023, representing a substantial 36% increase year-over-year.
The Tokyo-based company attributed the growth mainly to the success of several key game franchises.
Nexon's Q1 revenue jumped to ¥124.1 billion ($914.3 million), mainly driven by the strong performance of FIFA ONLINE 4 and FIFA MOBILE in South Korea, Dungeon&Fighter in China and Blue Archive globally.
The company's operating income of ¥56.3 billion ($414.7 million) was up an impressive 46% year-on-year, exceeding expectations due to lower-than-expected personnel and marketing costs.
"Our record first quarter reflects the success of our large and growing portfolio of global franchises," said Owen Mahoney, President and CEO of Nexon. He highlighted the company's mix of strong existing franchises and several new virtual worlds in development, which he called an "asymmetric upside opportunity" for shareholders.
In South Korea, Nexon achieved record quarterly revenues, up a remarkable 36% on an as-reported basis, thanks to FIFA ONLINE 4, FIFA MOBILE, and HIT2.
Despite a temporary setback from MapleStory due to perceived server issues, Nexon expects a rebound following aggressive remediation efforts.
In China, revenue grew an impressive 45% year-over-year, primarily due to Dungeon&Fighter's successful Lunar New Year sales of Dungeon&Fighter.
BlueArchive's 2nd Anniversary update contributed significantly to Japan's 29% year-over-year revenue increase.
Meanwhile, North America and Europe saw a modest 10% year-over-year revenue increase, driven by MapleStory and BlueArchive, while the rest saw a 24% year-over-year increase.
Not all launches lived up to Nexon's expectations, however.
Revenues from the initial release of KartRider: Drift fell short of projections. In response, Nexon plans to introduce user interface improvements and ongoing content updates.
The company also made notable progress in developing new titles. It launched Wars of Prasia, a new virtual world in South Korea, which quickly climbed to a top 5 ranking on Google Play and the Apple App Store.
In addition, Embark Studios, a Nexon subsidiary, conducted a successful closed beta test for THE FINALS, building anticipation for its release later this year.
For Q2, Nexon expects sales between ¥ 88.4 and 96.7 billion, an increase of 5% to 15% year-on-year.
Operating income is expected to be in the range of ¥22.1 billion to ¥28.7 billion, and net income is likely to be in the field of ¥18.1 billion to ¥23.1 billion.
The company's robust Q1 performance and promising outlook underscore its strong position in the global gaming market.