Model-makers Games Workshop have reported a solid rise in share prices following what many feared was going to be an uncertain time in the company’s trading.
Executives at the Nottinghamshire-based firm credit the success of their Warhammer brand of tabletop gaming in the first half of the 2018/19 financial year for this healthy upsurge. An increase in retail sales of 13% means that in the six months leading up to 2 December, the games company made an operating profit of £41 million. Overall sales totalled £124 million.
This is in line with the firm’s expectations but welcome news to investors who had been worried by the previously reported mysterious wobble in October 2018. It is now thought that previous announcement may have been a ploy to limit damage to its stock prices and keep its cards close to its chest, as the company had been boasting the best stock performance of any company in the FTSE 500 last year; traders had grown used to massive boosts in projected sales after every update.
The firm’s continued success can be at least partially attributed to the effect Brexit has had on the value of the pound. Its fall in value has not hit the company nearly as hard many others in the UK as three-quarters of Games Workshop’s revenue is from abroad.
Warhammer and Warhammer 40,000 are the company’s marquee brands and Games Workshop have declared them to be “in great shape”. Rebranding and updating of products like Warhammer: Age of Sigmar and Warhammer Quest: Silver Tower have helped attract new players to the hobby while ensuring a steady flow of sales from long-time players of Games Workshop brands.
Behind the scenes, the FTSE 250-listed firm has been working on major projects including increased factory capacity and enterprise resource planning, which along with Brexit have clearly contributed to their recent positive news. They have declared a dividend of 30p per share, in line with its policy of distributing surplus cash to investors.
Games Workshop’s comprehensive results for the first half the financial year are to be published on 15 January 2019.