On February 4, Sohu released its fourth quarter 2020 and full-year 2020 financial reports. In the fourth quarter of 2020, Sohu’s total revenue was US$253 million (approximately RMB 1.6 billion), an increase of approximately 34% year-on-year; total revenue for the year was US$750 million (approximately RMB 4.8 billion), an increase of approximately 11% year-on-year.
In terms of different business sectors, in the fourth quarter, brand advertising, games and other businesses achieved revenues of 42 million U.S. dollars (approximately RMB 271 million), 196 million U.S. dollars (approximately RMB 1.267 billion), and 15 million U.S. dollars (approximately RMB 271 million). RMB 97 million), of which revenue from the game business rose approximately 48% year-on-year, mainly due to the new end-game product “Dragon Babu Nostalgia” and the mobile game “Dream Link” (published by Changyou in the Korean market) in the fourth quarter online.
In terms of annual data, the gaming business achieved revenue of US$537 million (approximately RMB 3.471 billion), a year-on-year increase of about 22%, accounting for 70% of total revenue.
In terms of game business, the average monthly active users in PC client games in the fourth quarter was 2.3 million, an increase of 5% from the same period in 2019 and an increase of 17% from the previous quarter. This was mainly due to the company’s The new tour “Tianlong Babu Nostalgic Clothes” is launched inside. However, due to the suspension of Star Wars, this part of the monthly active growth was offset to some extent. The number of active paying users in the quarter was 900,000, a decrease of 6% from the same period in 2019 and a decrease of 4% from the previous quarter.
In terms of mobile games, the average number of monthly active users in the fourth quarter was 2.4 million, a decrease of 35% from the same period in 2019 and the previous quarter. The number of quarterly active paying users was 600,000, a decrease of 46% from the same period in 2019 and a decrease of 7% from the previous quarter, mainly due to the decline of old games such as “Dragon Babu Mobile Games” and “Dragon Babu Glory Edition” period.
Compared with the data in the third quarter of 2020, the number of monthly active users has dropped significantly. This is mainly because Changyou released the new game “Dream Link” in the Korean market in September. After the fourth quarter, the number of monthly active users has naturally fallen.
It is worth mentioning that the game “Dream Link” has a good running performance. According to media reports, from its launch on September 10 to mid-November, “Dream Link” Hanbok has exceeded 100 million yuan in sales. At the same time, according to the data of Qimai, the game has topped the 5th place on the South Korean iOS game best-selling list after its launch, and remained within the TOP 50 South Korean iOS game best-selling list until October 27, 2020.
Looking forward to the first quarter of 2021, Sohu predicts that brand advertising revenue will be between US$27 million and US$32 million, an increase of 5% to 25% over the same period in 2020; online game revenue will be between US$137 million and US$147 million, compared with 2020 Year-on-year growth of 3% to 10%.
Zhang Chaoyang, Chairman and CEO of Sohu, said in the financial report: “Although the outbreak of the new coronavirus and the weak macro economy have brought huge challenges to the company’s performance, we continue to carry out product innovation and technology upgrades. Commercialization efficiency and strict control of costs and expenses, achieved a profit of 53 million US dollars in the fourth quarter, far exceeding previous expectations.
“For the full year of 2020, after deducting the impact of Changyou’s withholding income tax in the second quarter of 2020, the company’s annual profit is 51 million US dollars.
“In terms of Sohu Media and Sohu Video, we continue to produce and distribute real-time and reliable news and high-quality content to consolidate Sohu’s core competitiveness and credibility as a mainstream media platform. We continue to iterate on live video, integrate it into the Sohu matrix, and Widely used in a variety of content marketing activities, further driving the upgrade of the media value of Sohu’s media portal and videos. Thanks to our continuous efforts, brand advertising revenue in the fourth quarter reached the previously expected upper limit.
“In terms of Changyou, due to the steady performance of the mobile game “Tianlong Babu Nostalgic Service” launched this quarter, the online game business performed well, and revenue exceeded the previous expected ceiling.
Source: Something about mobile games