Strong Digital Growth In Latest Rank Plc Half-year

STRONG DIGITAL GROWTH IN LATEST RANK PLC HALF-YEAR

29th January, 2015 at 02:32:51
Source: http://www.azonlinecasinos.com

Focus on Digital vertical pays off with revenue up 16 percent, and operating profit up 75 percent.

The digital vertical again performed strongly in the half-yearly report of UK land and online gambling major Rank Group plc, achieving revenue growth of 16% and operating profits up 75% year-on-year.

Rank posted its six month results for the period ended December 31, noting the following high points:

* H1 operating profit up 25% at 40.8 million with all brands improving period-on-period;

* Strong digital growth with revenue up 16% and operating profit up 75 percent;

* Improving performance across both Grosvenor Casinos and Mecca;

* New digital platform provider Bede Gaming appointed;

* New management team in place;

* Bingo duty reduction enabled investment into Mecca venues and customer prizes;

* Substantial deleveraging in the period with cash inflow from operations up 46 percent;

* Strong dividend growth with interim dividend of 1.60p, up 19% on 2013/14;

* Adjusted EPS up 34 percent;

* Group revenues of 361.7 million up 3% y-o-y;

* Group EBITDA at 62.1 million;

Adjusted profit pre-tax of 35.8 million;

Net debt at 94.9 million.

Henry Birch, chief executive, said:

"I am very pleased to be announcing a strong set of results with operating profit (before exceptional items) up 25 percent, following improvements across all parts of the business which has driven a 19% increase in our interim dividend.

"We have continued our focus on improving our digital business and this strategy has resulted in a 16% increase in digital revenues and 75% increase in operating profit.

"To further strengthen our offer in this important channel, we have today announced an agreement with Bede Gaming to supply our new core digital platform which will ensure the Group has a flexible and modern platform to build on.

"The first half saw three senior management appointments including two managing directors to lead Mecca and Grosvenor Casinos, and the newly created role of Group Director of Digital and Cross-Channel Services. These appointments further strengthen the Group's management team and ensure that we are well placed to take advantage of future growth."

"Rank remains in a strong financial position, possesses market-leading brands and has a clear strategy for long term growth. As a result, the Board continues to look to the future with confidence."

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