SOCIAL GAMING ENHANCES CHURCHILL DOWNS Q3 RESULTS
29th October, 2015 at 16:13:54
Big Fish Games proves to be a valuable acquisition.
The acquisition of internet social gaming firm Big Fish Games last December is proving to be a valuable addition to US racing company Churchill Downs, which this week posted its Q3-2015 results.
During the quarter, Big Fish Games contributed revenues of $103.5 million and adjusted EBITDA of $33.3 million. Comparing results to Big Fish Games before CDI's acquisition, total bookings for the quarter increased $29.1 million, or 34 percent, driven by growth in both the Casino and Free-to-Play Casual segments.
Casino bookings grew by $3.5 million, driven by a 9% increase in average bookings per paying user compared to the third quarter of 2014, offset partially by a 1% decline in average paying users.
Free-to-Play Casual bookings' growth of $31.1 million was driven by a 158% increase in quarterly average paying users and a 71% increase in average bookings per paying user. Management reports that growth in Free-to-Play Casual bookings was driven by the continued success of Gummy Drop!, as well as the successful launch of Dungeon Boss on both the Apple iTunes and Google Play stores.
Premium bookings declined $5.5 million, or 17 percent, primarily driven by customers continuing to shift from paid PC games to free-to-play mobile games. In addition, the strengthening USA dollar compared to other currencies resulted in conversion to lower USD bookings of approximately $1 million.
Big Fish Games Adjusted EBITDA results exceeded those of both the first and second quarters of 2015, due, in part, to Free-to-Play product revenues exceeding user acquisition spending and a maturing social casino market.
On the group front, CDI reported Q3 performance that included:
* Record net revenues of $279.8 million, up 61% over third-quarter 2014;
* Record Adjusted EBITDA of $70.6 million, more than double the prior year's third quarter thanks to a $33.3 million contribution from Big Fish;
* Record net cash flows from operating activities of $223.2 million, up 95% over the prior year;
* TwinSpires revenues grew 9% on strong organic online wagering growth;
* Net earnings and diluted net earnings per share grew 19% and 20 percent, respectively, to $4.2 million and $0.24 per diluted share;
* $1.15 per share dividend and $150 million stock repurchase plan approved by board of directors.
Bill Carstanjen, CDI's chief executive officer, said:
"We delivered record revenues and record Adjusted EBITDA largely driven by the contribution from our Big Fish Games division. In addition, we were also encouraged by the growth in Adjusted EBITDA during the quarter for our TwinSpires and Racing segments.
"While our primary focus remains on driving shareholder value through organic growth and other strategic acquisitions and investment opportunities, we are pleased that the company's free cash flow generation and strong balance sheet allow us to create value for our shareholders through numerous ways."
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