Playtech Reports Another Strong Year

Management reports strong growth leading to sound financials

Online gambling software developer Playtech plc has posted its full year audited results for the year ended , flagging another year of growth delivering strong financial results and record dividend distribution.

Financial highlights of the report include:

* Revenue up by 16 percent to Euro 367.2 million (2012: Euro 317.5 million)

* Adjusted EBITDA excluding share of profit from William Hill Online, up by 17 percent to Euro 159.4 million (2012: Euro 136.2 million)

* Adjusted net profit excluding share of profit from William Hill Online, up by 26 percent to Euro 148.3 million (2012: Euro 117.8 million); reported net profit including the gain on the sale of investment in William Hill Online of Euro 488. 8 million

* Adjusted basic earnings per share excluding share of profit from William Hill Online, up by 25 percent to 50.7 Euro cents per share (2012: 40.7 Euro cents per share)

* Cash balances at year end of Euro 527.4 million (2012: Euro 120.9 million)

* Record total 2013 dividend of approximately Euro 188.5 million (64.3 Euro cents per share) reflecting a special dividend of GBP 100 million to be paid in sterling (equivalent to approximately 34.1 pence per share), interim dividend of Euro 22.8 million (7.8 Euro cents per share) and a recommended final dividend of Euro 45.2 million (15.4 Euro cents per share)

Adjusted EBITDA, Adjusted net profit and Adjusted EPS were calculated after adding back non-cash charges, cash expenses relating to professional costs on acquisitions, gains on sale of investments and one-off charges.

In a trading update Thursday, the company reported that it has made a strong start to 2014, with daily average revenues for the first seven weeks of 2014 up over 15 percent on Q1 2013 (up over 8 percent after excluding the acquisition of PokerStrategy) and over 4 percent on Q4 2013.

Operational highlights during the period included:

* Successful sale of Playtech's 29 percent stake in William Hill Online for approximately GBP 424 million (Euro 497 million) A 3.5 return on investment.

* Landmark agreements with Ladbrokes to provide a full product suite and innovative marketing services (Ladbrokes launched the Vegas tab, Mobenga, and Geneity sports system and poker in Spain in the second half of 2013, and launched live casino in January 2014.)

* Acquisition PokerStrategy.com, complementing Playtech's poker offering and PTTS marketing services division

* Several significant launches including:

Mobile live casino on HTML5 with a number of licensees

First launch of HTML5 mobile poker, mobile poker native iOS application approved by the French App store

Five sports betting companies now launched on Geneity platform, gaining strong momentum

Unibet launched poker in France

Caliente launched poker and casino in Mexico

Live casino in Spain being delivered in partnership with Casino Gran Madrid

* Paddy Power migrated its live casino to Playtech including a dedicated facility

* Betfair completed its migration onto the iPoker network, launched poker in Denmark and Italy making the Italian network a nine operator network

* Industry-first roll-out of a unique, multi-channel offering through a seamless integrated retail and online solution

* Soft launch of social gaming platform, Wild Spin Casino, on Facebook

* Won competitive tender to supply casino, poker, bingo on both web and mobile with Holland Casino in preparation of forthcoming online gambling regulation in the Netherlands

Alan Jackson, non-executive chairman of Playtech, said:

"Playtech has once again delivered an exceptional performance. The company has focused on deepening its licensee relationships; creating innovative new content; improving its products across web and mobile, and providing its customers with cutting edge products and services.

"As online gambling continues to develop, it is pleasing to see Playtech's investment in mobile and further product development paying-off.

"I am delighted to announce the payment of a substantial special dividend totalling GBP 100 million in addition to the recommended 15.4 Euro cents final dividend, bringing the total dividend for 2013 to over Euro188 million."

The report showcases the wide range of activity in which Playtech is involved, illustrating growth in these areas:

* Revenues from online casino activities up 25 percent

* Revenues from Services up 5 percent and growing following the acquisition of Poker Strategy

* Revenues from online bingo operations up 7 percent

* Revenues from Videobet activity up 14 percent

* Revenues from live dealer operations up 17 percent

* Mobile remained the outperformer, growing strongly across all gambling genres

* Online poker remains a "challenging" sector for Playtech

* Still early days for online sportsbetting following the acquisition of Geneity, but considerable potential

* Social and casual gaming a potentially Euro 30 billion global business in which Playtech, through Skywind deveopers, is actively engaging. The company has executed a soft launch of its Wild Spin Casino on Facebook and plans to carry out a full launch soon.

Online Casino News Courtesy of Infopowa

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