This excerpt taken from the ATVI DEFA14A filed Dec 5, 2007.
Blizzard Entertainment has four of the five best-selling PC games of all time, Warcraft, StarCraft, Diablo and World of Warcraft. In addition, Blizzard Entertainment has been running one of the largest free online gaming services, called Battle.net, for over 10 years, with still millions of active players.
Blizzard Entertainment has sold more than 56 million units worldwide and created unprecedented brand loyalty among consumers. With World of Warcraft, Blizzard Entertainment has created the number one MMORPG and the largest online community in the world. Its subscription-based revenue model in North America and Europe and usage-based model in Asia yields the highest margins in the industry, in excess of 40%. World of Warcraft has more than nine million subscribers. About four million are in North America and Europe and about five million are in Asia.
World of Warcraft gives Blizzard Entertainment unrivaled expertise in online gaming. Over the past 15 years, Blizzard has invested over $200 million to build its best-in-class content and infrastructure. It has 2,000 game masters around the world that provide 24/7 high-quality customer support. World of Warcraft has already captured a substantial share of the audience. It is the only game developed by an American or European publisher to have created a substantial footprint in the Asian markets.
At Vivendi, we are very excited about the future of Activision Blizzard. Bobby Kotick and Brian Kelly have an excellent track record. Bobby and Brian are also very fine persons. Doing business with them is thrilling. Their expertise is unmatched in the industry and this unique partnership is built on the strong foundation of trust and respect. Bobby has outstanding experience. Bobby will be a great leader for Activision Blizzard. And now Ill turn the call over to Bobby Kotick.
Thank you very much, Jean-Bernard. As you know, a large part of accomplishing such a complex transaction is the chemistry of the principals. From our first meeting, Brian, Mike and I felt that Jean-Bernard, Rene, Bruce and Mike Morhaime and their terrific teams shared our commitment to excellence and our commitment to building shareholder value.
Under Jean-Bernards leadership, Vivendi has transformed itself into one of the worlds leading diversified media and telecommunications companies, and we share his belief that new, broad audiences are emerging for interactive entertainment. We also share a belief that this growth will come from a variety of delivery platforms with a variety of delivery models, all of which have the potential for margin expansion.