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Putting Roblox’s incredible $45 billion IPO in context


Yesterday, Roblox made good on its plans to go public, with employees and previous investors selling hundreds of millions of shares in a direct listing on the New York Stock Exchange. In a private funding round in January, those shares were worth $45. When the market closed Wednesday, they were selling at $69.50, a price that valued Roblox Corp. as a whole at $45.3 billion (as of this writing, Roblox Corp.’s stock price peaked at $77.30 and currently sits at $72.72 in Thursday morning trading).

How did this company, whose single title has become a game platform unto itself, become worth more than major game publishers like Electronic Arts and Take-Two? To help answer that question, we put together this deep dive into the numbers that are powering the Roblox revolution. They paint a picture of a company with an extremely young and incredibly engaged user base that has ballooned during the 2020 pandemic quarantine. But Roblox is also a company that is currently struggling to convert its huge and growing annual revenues into profitability.

(Unless otherwise noted, numbers are sourced from SEC documents or Roblox’s own website)

Valuations

Roblox

  • Jan. 2017: $500 million
  • July 2018: $2.3 billion
  • Feb. 2020: $3.9 billion
  • Jan. 2021: $29.5 billion
  • March 10, 2021: $45.3 billion

(Sources: 1, 2, 3)

Other gaming companies (current valuations)

  • Ubisoft: $9.58 billion
  • Take-Two: $19.43 billion
  • Electronic Arts: $38.09 billion
  • Roblox: $45.3 billion
  • Activision: $72.23 billion
  • Tencent: $843.86 billion

Earnings

Revenue

  • 2018: $312.8 million
  • 2019: $488 million
  • 2020: $923.9 million

Bookings

(i.e., total purchases or robux virtual currency, including robux not spent that year)

  • 2018: $499 million
  • 2019: $694.3 million
  • 2020: $1.88 billion

Net losses

  • 2018: $88.1 million
  • 2019: $71 million
  • 2020: $253.3 million
That guy with the money bags hat should be <em>Roblox</em>'s new mascot
Enlarge / That guy with the money bags hat should be Roblox‘s new mascot

User base

Daily Active Users

  • Q4 2018: 13.7 million
  • Q1 2019: 15.8 million
  • Q2 2019: 17.1 million
  • Q3 2019: 18.4 million
  • Q4 2019: 19.1 million
  • Q1 2020: 23.6 million
  • Q2 2020: 33.4 million
  • Q3 2020: 36.2 million
  • Q4 2020: 37.1 million
  • $57.7: Average spending per daily active user in 2020

Total playtime

  • 2018: 9.4 billion hours
  • 2019: 13.7 billion hours
  • 2020: 30.6 billion hours (2.6 hours per average daily active user per day)

Demographics

  • 25%: Proportion of Roblox users under 9
  • 29%: Proportion of Roblox users aged 9-12
  • 13%: Proportion of Roblox users aged 13-16
  • 16%: Proportion of Roblox users aged 17-24
  • 14%: Proportion of Roblox users 25 or older
  • 72%: Proportion of Roblox users playing on mobile platforms
  • 25%: Proportion of Roblox users playing on PCs
  • 3%: Proportion of Roblox users playing on game consoles
  • 33%: Proportion of Roblox users from US and Canada
  • 29%: Proportion of Roblox users from Europe
  • 15%: Proportion of Roblox users from Asia

User-generated content

  • 18 million: Total number of user-generated “experiences” Roblox Corp. says are on its platform.
  • 90%: Proportion of player hours spent on the top 1,000 most popular of those experiences.
  • 20 billion: Total number of visits/plays for “Adopt Me!” the most popular Roblox experience (Source)
  • 8 million: Total number of active player-developers creating Roblox content.
  • 1.27 million: Number of those player-developers who generated in-game robux earnings from their creations in 2020.
  • 4,300: Player-developers who earned the equivalent of at least $350 in robux in 2020 (and qualified for the Developer Exchange Program to convert those robux to real money).
  • 1,287: Player-developers who earned the equivalent of at least $10,000 in robux in 2020.
  • 305: Player-developers who earned the equivalent of at least $100,000 in robux in 2020.
  • 36: Player-developers who earned the equivalent of at least $1 million in robux in 2020.
  • 3: Player-developers who earned the equivalent of at least $10 million in robux in 2020.

Total “exchange fees” paid to player-developers

  • Q1 2018: $16.279 million
  • Q2 2018: $16.495 million
  • Q3 2018: $18 million
  • Q4 2018: $21.1 million
  • Q1 2019: $22.72 million
  • Q2 2019: $23.29 million
  • Q3 2019: $26.2 million
  • Q4 2019: $39.76 million
  • Q1 2020: $44.5 million
  • Q2 2020: $85.05 million
  • Q3 2020: $85.47 million
  • Q4 2020: $113.71 million
  • 36%: Percentage of total Roblox revenues paid in exchange fees to player-developers in 2020.

Listing image by Roblox





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