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Games Workshop announces record Warhammer profits, yet again

The Warhammer 40k and Age of Sigmar maker banked $250m profit this year, after renewing its flagship wargame and revealing big price rises.

A Warhammer 40k model, commander Dante, a warrior in golden armor with a pair of white wings embossed on his breastplate, holding a gun and an axe

Games Workshop has announced pre-tax profits of “not less than” $254 million (£200 million) for financial year 2023-24. The UK-based firm, which manufactures the hit miniature wargames Warhammer 40k and Warhammer Age of Sigmar, will reveal more of what lies behind those figures when it publishes its annual report at the end of July.

We know at least part of the picture. The firm’s half-year financial report, published in January, revealed that the launch of Warhammer 40k 10th edition gave the firm its best sales month ever. The latest edition of Warhammer 40k has been extremely well received, providing a simpler on-ramp for new players, and (after a few balance tweaks) a satisfying challenge for competitive players.

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According to a statement published on Wednesday, Games Workshop’s revenue this year from its core business, making and selling miniature wargame figures, is “not less than” $623 million (£490 million). There’s at least a further $38 million (£30 million) in licensing revenue, too.

Interest is consistently high for Games Workshop’s products, with the firm sometimes struggling to keep up with demand for models from popular Warhammer 40k factions. Last year, retailers reported difficulty receiving enough inventory to meet demand on product launch weekends.

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Unusually for a model maker, GW owns most of its supply chain and produces almost all of the models it sells in-house, so it has more control over scaling up production. On June 9, it submitted plans to build a fourth Warhammer factory, measuring over 40,000 square feet, for local government approval.

The firm announced a price hike of 3-5% across its products in May. At the time it did not cite specific costs, other than market conditions in general.

As in previous years, the firm is issuing a Group Profit Share cash payment to its employees which is “paid in cash on an equal basis to each member of staff”, and is not tied to performance bonuses. This year the profit share amounts to $23 million (£18 million), the highest yet.

Since staff are typically fans of Games Workshop products, and receive an in-store discount, we expect a lot of that bonus to rapidly be converted into more Space Marines.

The Stonks meme, edited so that the businessman in a black suit is wearing a Warhammer 40k Primaris Space Marine helmet

This year, Games Workshop has declared and paid $175 million USD (£138 million GBP) in share dividends, or $5.35 (£4.20) per share. The firm’s shares have risen in price by roughly 6% following the latest profit announcement, and are sitting around $128 at time of writing.

It’s easy to understand why investors are frothy about the firm. Games Workshop shares regularly deliver a return of 4% or higher, and since 2016 the share price has risen in value on several occasions when it previously seemed to have peaked.

On top of that, the firm’s balance sheet is extremely healthy: it’s largely debt free. For a comparison with a considerably more troubled firm, see our coverage of highly leveraged board games giant Asmodee.

We’re keen to learn more about Games Workshop’s fortunes and future plans, and we’ll be diving deep into the firm’s annual report when it’s published on July 30. To ensure you don’t miss our coverage, you can follow Wargamer on Google News.