A new report from Business Insider Poland paints a grim picture for CD Projekt: the company’s value has cratered by over 75% since just before the launch of Cyberpunk 2077. A business that once boasted a market capitalisation of over 40 billion Polish złoty—briefly becoming the most valuable games company in Europe—is now worth less than zł10 billion.
In the weeks leading up to Cyberpunk’s launch, CDP shares were trading at around zł400 each, hitting zł443 a share only 6 days before the game’s release. The story since then has been one of sharp falls and brief plateaus: with CDP shares and market cap halving in value in the first few months of 2021, then almost halving again since the end of March this year.
In simpler terms, this basically means that the reception of Cyberpunk 2077 and CDP’s subsequent firefighting of the problems has shorn off 5 years’ of the company’s overall value. This is despite Cyberpunk 2077 selling almost 14 million copies in 2020 alone. Ever since launch the developer has been largely focused on fixing problems with the game (mainly on console, it has to be said): and the multiplayer mode that was once promised is now not happening. Perhaps the most humiliating moment, perception-wise, was that Sony removed the game from the PlayStation Store (it has subsequently returned).
The company’s post-Cyberpunk plummet has left its market cap trending around a level equivalent to its value in 2017. While it’s probably to be expected that a game company’s value would drop a bit after their much-hyped game finally released, the dizzying scale of CDP’s fall can hardly be interpreted as anything but a result of Cyberpunk’s mismanagement.
Perhaps more galling for CDP is the possibility that they are no longer Poland’s biggest game studio. Business Insider Poland draws on some maths done by Puls Biznesu, a Polish business daily, to suggest that Techland might now be Poland’s biggest game company by market cap. The numbers on this one are pretty fuzzy, though: Techland aren’t listed on a stock exchange, so Puls Biznesu had to guess at what their share price would be to arrive at its final estimate of a market cap of around zł10.6 billion.
It’s not the end of the world for CDP: the company still sits comfortably in the WIG20 index of the 20 biggest companies on the Warsaw stock exchange. In 2017, CDP was still in the afterglow of The Witcher 3’s release, and had only released its last DLC a year prior. Returning to a 2017-era market cap, then, doesn’t mean CDP is on the verge of shutting up shop, but it does show that what’s happened with Cyberpunk has hurt the studio. No wonder that all of a sudden it’s talking about a new Witcher game.