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Cyberpunk publisher CD Projekt stock rises after announcing new games


An indication promoting the sport Cyberpunk 2077.

Mike Kemp | In Pictures by way of Getty Images

Shares of Polish sport publisher CD Projekt rose sharply Wednesday after the corporate introduced a number of main games it is engaged on within the subsequent few years, together with new installments in its common Cyberpunk and Witcher franchises.

In a method replace late Tuesday, CD Projekt revealed a slew of new titles at present in growth, together with a sequel to Cyberpunk 2077 codenamed “Orion.” The sport “will take the Cyberpunk franchise further and continue harnessing the potential of this dark future universe,” the agency mentioned.

Shares of CD Projekt have been up round 7% Wednesday afternoon, having earlier surged as a lot as 9% on the market open.

It comes after a sequence of mishaps which have plagued the corporate during the last two years. After a lot hype, Cyberpunk 2077’s launch in 2020 was met with rage from players who skilled bugs and poor efficiency on older consoles. The sport’s launch got here the identical yr that new machines from Sony and Microsoft have been being launched.

Backlash to the blunder was so fierce that at one level Sony removed the game from its digital PlayStation Store. Cyberpunk 2077 was later reinstated on the service.

Since then, CD Projekt made a number of updates and enhancements to Cyberpunk 2077, whereas the discharge of an anime TV sequence based mostly on the futuristic sci-fi franchise, “Cyberpunk: Edgerunners,” has helped revive interest within the sport.

CD Projekt says it has offered 20 million copies of its Cyberpunk 2077 sport so far, and over 65 million copies of all three games in its Witcher franchise.

Last yr, the corporate suffered a ransomware attack that noticed hackers steal the supply code to a number of of its games — together with The Witcher 3 and Cyberpunk 2077 — and promote it on the darkish net. Notably, CD Projekt on the time refused to pay the ransom demanded by hackers.

Despite a surge in CD Projekt’s share value Wednesday, the stock is down greater than 40% for the reason that begin of the yr.

Here have been another highlights from CD Projekt’s technique replace:

  • The firm proposed a stock-based incentive program for workers aimed toward attracting — and retaining — prime growth expertise. According to Chief Financial Officer Piotr Nielubowicz, this system might be “similar to those offered by our top global competitors.”
  • It is opening a new growth studio in Boston, Massachusetts, to assist broaden its footprint in North America.
  • CD Projekt plans to purchase as much as 100 million Polish zlotys ($21 million) value of its personal stock from traders in a share buyback plan.

The firm additionally revealed its co-founder and joint-CEO Marcin Iwinski might be stepping down after 28 years within the position. Iwinski will proceed on as joint-CEO till the tip of 2022, after which he’ll turn out to be chairman of the supervisory board.

He will stay “a major shareholder” and “active and engaged” in supporting the board, based on an announcement Tuesday.

Packed pipeline of games

Three new games within the Witcher role-playing sport sequence are anticipated to launch within the coming years, together with a new installment within the franchise codenamed “Polaris.” Previously introduced by the corporate in March, the sport is a follow-up to the agency’s highly-acclaimed The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. It is at present in pre-production.

CD Projekt didn’t specify a timeline for when the new games would come out however mentioned its three new unique Witcher titles would launch inside a six-year interval after Polaris’ launch.

The firm plans to push into on-line multiplayer with a few of its future titles, together with one other sport within the Witcher franchise codenamed “Sirius.”

“We are planning to add multiplayer to some of our future titles, and we are planning to do more in the area of TV and film,” mentioned Michal Nowakowski, CD Projekt’s senior vice chairman of enterprise growth.

CD Projekt’s multiplayer ambitions have a whole lot of potential as a result of greater engagement in multiplayer,” Peter Garnry, head of equity strategy at Saxo Bank, wrote in a note Wednesday.

CD Projekt also announced a totally new game it is working on beyond its main two franchises, codenamed Hadar. The firm did not give away much detail but said it “at present within the conceptual part.”

It was an unusual display of transparency in the games industry. Big publishers often remain tight-lipped about planned major releases up until they are ready to present some visuals and gameplay to fans, typically at large trade shows.

Companies like Sony and Nintendo have more and more eschewed showy trade conferences just like the E3 expo in favor of smaller-scale updates. After being cancelled as soon as in 2020 after which changed with a digital various in 2021, E3 was again scrapped this year by organizers, who cited well being dangers surrounding Covid-19.

Source: www.cnbc.com


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