[PR] Evolution released today its Year-end Report for January-December 2018.
Fourth quarter of 2018 (Q4 2017)
- Operating revenues increased by 38% to EUR 70.2 million (50.7)
- EBITDA increased by 40% to EUR 31.6 million (22.6), corresponding to a margin of 45.0% (44.6)
- Profit for the period amounted to EUR 25.5 million (18.0)
- Earnings per share amounted to EUR 0.71 (0.50)
Full-year 2018 (2017)
- Operating revenues increased by 38% to EUR 245.4 million (178.4)
- EBITDA increased by 34% to EUR 107.7 million (80.6), corresponding to a margin of 43.9% (45.2)
- Profit for the period amounted to EUR 83.5 million (62.1)
- Earnings per share amounted to EUR 2.32 (1.73)
- The Board proposes a dividend of EUR 1,20 per share (0.90) and intends to propose a buy-back programme to the Annual General Meeting
Events during the fourth quarter of 2018
- Launch of scalable Infinite Blackjack
- Continued expansion in North America
Events after the end of the quarter
- Acquisition of Ezugi completed
- 10 new game titles launched at ICE 2019 – increasing the gap to competition
Summary of the fourth quarter and full-year 2018
Comments from CEO Martin Carlesund:
I am very pleased to summarise a good end to the year with continued favourable growth and high profitability. Revenues in the fourth quarter amounted to EUR 70.2 million, corresponding to an increase of 38 percent compared with the same period in 2017. EBITDA amounted to EUR 31.6 million with a margin of 45 percent. For the full-year, the margin was 44 percent, which is satisfactory given the high expansion pace. At year-end, we had approximately 550 tables live; significantly more than what we had planned in the beginning of 2018. During 2019, we will invest in a new studio in Malta and continue to expand our existing studios to meet the market demand. At the same time, we optimise the expansion from last year, and we expect a slightly strengthened EBITDA margin in the range of 44-46 percent for the full-year.
We continue to grow in North America. During the fourth quarter, we went live with several new customers in the US, and just after year-end we also signed an agreement with a second customer in Canada. To further strengthen our position, we have also carried out Evolution’s first-ever acquisition. With the business of Ezugi, we further extend our footprint especially in the US, while also gaining more studio capacity and resources within product development. Another key activity in North America will be to roll out more games; Live Infinite Blackjack is one example that was successfully launched for our European operators in the past quarter.
Among our markets, the Nordics in particular have exhibited favourable growth in the quarter. Rest of Europe also showed positive progress, while the growth in Rest of World was somewhat lower than in previous quarters. As before, the UK market is currently slow as a consequence of the latest regulatory requirements. At year-end, Sweden’s new gaming regulation came into effect, and we can note that several of our customers have been off to a great start.
At the publication of this report, this year’s edition of ICE has just taken place, and I am immensely proud of the 10 game titles that Evolution revealed at the show. Our product and development teams have put countless hours into creating games beyond the expected, which lay the foundation for continued long-term growth. The main highlight is MONOPOLY Live, which is an evolved special edition of our successful Dream Catcher. We also launched a live game show based on the popular TV programme Deal or No Deal. Both titles have been developed to take the entire Live Casino category to the next level, expand to new player types and create more commercial value for our operators.
Among all the new products, I would also like to highlight our new dice games Lightning Dice and Super Sic Bo. Dice games have a long history and a global attraction, and we confidently look forward to introducing our innovative live versions for our customers.
All in all, we can look back at yet another amazing year in the Evolution history with expansion outside Europe and many successes in innovation and created customer value. With a new studio in Malta and all games that will be launched, I am confident that we are in excellent shape to continue increasing our market leadership going forward. In that context, we can also conclude that the first quarter has been off to a good start.
Presentation for investors, analysts and media
CEO Martin Carlesund and CFO Jacob Kaplan will present the report and answer questions on Thursday, 14 February 2019 at 09:00 a.m. CET via a telephone conference. The presentation will be in English and can also be followed online. Number for participation by telephone: +46 8 566 42 707 / +44 333 300 9035. Follow the presentation at https://tv.streamfabriken.com/evolution-gaming-group-q4-2018.