Each week, CasinoBeats breaks down the numbers behind some of the industry’s most interesting stories. In our latest edition we take a look at financial updates from Scientific Games, Bragg and IGT, New York sports betting, and the EnTrain initiative.
Playtech confirmed media speculation which had suggested that the gambling tech firm received a preliminary approach from Gopher Investments with regards to a potential counter-bid for the group.
The company, which last month confirmed that a £2.7bn offer had been received from Australian-listed gaming manufacturer Aristocrat Leisure, says that Gopher approached the firm on October 21, 2021.
This, it was added, was seeking access to certain due diligence information, in order to explore terms on which a possible offer for all of the issued and to be issued share capital of Playtech might be made.
Playtech noted that the discussions were “at an early stage and ongoing,” and therefore “there can be no certainty that Gopher’s approach will result in an offer for the company, nor as to the terms on which any offer might be made”.
In September, the long-mooted sale of Finalto, Playtech’s financial services division, was agreed alongside Gopher, an investment vehicle which is also a 4.97 per cent shareholder in the firm, for an enterprise value of $250m in cash.
The Bicycle Hotel & Casino in Bell Gardens agreed to pay $500,000 and undergo an “enhanced review” to resolve an investigation into alleged anti-money laundering failures.
Under the terms of the agreement, the Bicycle agreed to pay the United States $500,000, which represents the revenue the casino made from the high roller. The casino must also implement additional review and reporting requirements to assure BSA compliance, including an audit by a third party and regular reporting to the US Attorney’s Office.
The settlement also requires the venue to cooperate with law enforcement in any additional investigations or proceedings arising from the conduct described in the agreement’s statement of facts.
Designed to the prevent future violations of federal law, the investigation into alleged breaches of AML provisions of the Bank of Secrecy Act and the partnership that operates The Bicycle Hotel & Casino, are said to revolve around the casino’s failure to file Currency Transaction Reports and Suspicious Activity Reports for Casinos – required under the BSA, a law intended to thwart money laundering.
The New York State Gaming Commission issued approval to nine mobile sports betting operators, whose revenue within the region will be taxed at a rate of 51 per cent.
The ten-year licenses, which have a $25m fee attached, were issued to a pair of applying consortiums, one of which, led by FanDuel, includes Bally’s, BetMGM and DraftKings.
A second group, which was also one of two submissions spearheaded by Kambi, featured Rush Street Interactive, Caesars, Wynn, Resorts World and PointsBet.
Regulators, who deemed that licenses will not be granted to Penn National, bet365, theScore Bet, Fox Bet, and Fanatics, are expectant that gamblers will be able to place bets by next year’s Super Bowl NFL showpiece which is slated to take place on Sunday 13 February at California’s SoFi Stadium.
Bragg Gaming Group increased its financial guidance for the current year, as the company reflects on a “strong” third quarter driven by new market diversification and an uptick in propriety and exclusive third-party online content.
The firm, which anticipates closing its Spin Games acquisition by the close of the year, is looking to expand its presence across North America and Europe, in addition to achieving further penetration of recently entered markets, such as the Netherlands.
The comments came as the group disclosed its Q3 performance for the period ending September 30, 2021, during which time revenue increased by 9.9 per cent to €12.9m ($15.2m) compared to €11.7m ($13.8m) in Q3 2020, inclusive of a full quarter of contributions from Wild Streak.
Wagering revenue climbed 4.8 per cent to €3.2bn ($3.8bn), with the number of unique players using Bragg games via its Oryx Hub distribution platform and content up 14.4 per cent to 2.1 million from 1.9 million year-on-year.
Gross profit scored a 30.1 per cent rise to €6.6m ($7.8m) from €5.1m ($6m) in Q3 2020, driven by a continued shift towards a higher proportion of revenues from igaming and turnkey services, which have lower associated cost of sales when compared to games and content.
However, net loss increased to €2.5m ($2.9m) from €700,000 ($800,000), primarily due to the higher gross profit and a reduction in costs related to deferred consideration payable, partially offset by the incremental increase in employee costs and professional fees as a result of the Nasdaq listing.
unveiled a goal of positively impacting the lives of over 1,000,000 people around the world, either directly or through their families and dependents, by 2030.
This, says that sports betting and gaming group, will be achieved via a multi-million-pound global initiative to increase access to technology and improve diversity, titled EnTrain.
The programme, launched at the ‘Entain Sustain’ event, marks “the first global, strategic commitment from the Entain Foundation to contribute to the international communities in which it operates, with a single initiative supporting people across all under-represented groups”.
The EnTrain initiative is comprised of the four core pillars of:
- Entain Academy: supplying transformative technology training for the next generation.
- Entain Scholarships: providing the platform for a diverse selection of candidates to become digital pioneers.
- Entain Apprenticeships: upskilling and developing existing employees, and expanding external apprenticeship schemes with new and existing partners.
- Entain Partnerships: partnering and collaborating with organisations around the world who amplify and support diversity in technology.
Scientific Games hailed progress through the year’s third quarter, spearheaded by its gaming segment, in addition to elaborating upon “tremendous progress” made in accelerating a vision of becoming “the leading cross-platform global game company”.
Through the previously announced sale of its lottery and sports wagering businesses, in addition to acquisitions such as Authentic Gaming and Lightning Box, the company says that it boasts “an exciting path” to “move rapidly to unlock significant value”.
Revenue through the year’s quarter recorded a 25 per cent uptick to $539m (2020: $432m), buoyed by continued gaming momentum in the North American market, including gains in gaming ops, game sales and tables business, in addition to a strong US igaming performance.
The group’s gaming segment climbed 47 per cent to $339m (2020: $231m), driven by the “success of our new product roadmap,” including new game launches, as well as a growing cabinet footprint with its North American premium installed base growing for the fifth consecutive quarter.
International Game Technology raised its guidance for the full-year, after praising a “significant improvement” in key financial and performance metrics across core business segments through the third quarter.
Group-wide revenue during the period increased 21 per cent to $984m (2020: $816m), with the firm’s global lottery division taking the lion’s share with $652m, a 14 per cent uptick from $570m year-on-year. IGT says that this is due to sustained momentum driving global same-store sales growth up nine per cent.
Global gaming revenue increased 34 per cent to $289m from 2020’s $216m, with IGT’s digital and betting segment, established in September and comprising the firm’s igaming and sports betting activities, rising 37 per cent to $43m (2020: $31m) due to “double-digit growth across activities”.
Operating income during the three month’s ending September 30, 2021, rose 144 per cent to $212m (2020: £87m), driven by high profit flow-through of global lottery same-store sales growth, mix of high-margin Italy lottery sales, strong operating leverage across businesses, and disciplined cost management and benefits from IGT’s structural cost-savings program.
Net income of $101m (2020: $129m) was aligned to higher revenue and operating profit as well as a reduction in foreign exchange losses, with adjusted EBITDA closing Q3 at $407m, up 42 per cent from $287m.