STRONG 2016 REPORTED BY SPORTECH
02nd March, 2017 at 16:50:53
Betting technology provider trebles profits.
UK betting technology provider Sportech plc has posted a strong set of FY-2016 results, flagging the following highlights:
* Profit before tax up 216% at £ 30.7 million (2015: £9.7m);
* Results in line with expectations with overall EBITDA up 3% to £ 23.8 million (2015: £ 23.1 million);
* Victory in the eight-year VAT judicial struggle with HM Revenue and Customs, resulting in a £ 97 million refund;
* Plans to return capital to shareholders by way of a tender offer for approximately £ 20 million of Sportech ordinary shares, representing a buyback of around 10% of the issued share capital;
* Transformation in group financing with adjusted net cash balances at 31 December 2016 of £ 36.5 million compared to adjusted net debt of £ 57.7 million in 2015. The latter reduces by £ 21.5 million once the Spot the Ball tax and fees are paid, and following receipt of the remaining £ 3 million;
* Balance sheet strengthened by £ 22.6 million despite a detailed review of assets leading to a non-cash impairment of £ 63.7 million;
* Adjusted profit before tax is up by 17% to £ 13.8 million (2015: £ 11.8 million)
" On a constant currency basis, EBITDA, excluding the closed collector channel, remained level with 2015 at £ 23.8 million, made up of:
Sportech Racing and Digital - £ 9.4 million - down £ 300,000 compared with the same period a year ago.
Sportech Venues - £ 2.7 million, £O 500,000 down y-o-y.
Football Pools - up 5% at £ 15 million.
Post the reporting period, the company announced the sale of its The Football Pools subsidiary for £ 83 million in a deal with a private equity fund.
Group chief executive Ian Penrose said in his report Thursday:
"This has been a transformational year. We have moved into a strong net cash position and have today announced details of a return of capital to shareholders. We have also announced the sale of our Football Pools business for £ 83 million, following a highly successful modernisation programme.
"The Group is now in a strong position and more focused to take advantage of the strategic positioning of its predominantly US based businesses."
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