Gambling software supplier Playtech is treating shareholders to a €150 million ($169.38 million) special dividend as revenues posted strong growth in the first half of 2016.
The company, which provides software to online gambling and sports betting groups, also raised its interim dividend by 15 percent to 11 cents per share.
Revenues rose 18 percent to €337.7 million ($381.33 million) in the six months ending June 30, from €286 million ($322.95 million) in the same period last year, as revenues from its flagship arm posted an 11 percent increase to €306.4 million ($345.99 million).
The plunge in sterling, however, dragged down the company’s net profit by 42 percent to €48.8 million ($55.1 million) from €83.9 million ($94.73 million) in the same period last year.
Accounting for 52 percent of Playtech’s total revenue, casino revenue was up by 19 percent to €177 million, followed by services with €76.5 million, sport with €17.7 million, and land-based with €15.5 million. Playtech’s casino unit also more than offset the 11 percent drop in bingo and the 16 percent decline in poker.
“The gaming division continues to deliver strong growth, driven by our industry-leading casino offering. We are ‘locked-in’ future growth with important new licensees signed and significant contracts renewed,” Playtech Chairman Alan Jackson said in a statement. “Seven of our top 10 licensees are now on contracts which have at least three years remaining and our pipeline of new licensees and structured agreements remains strong.”
The company, which was founded by Israeli billionaire Teddy Sagi, has been on an acquisition spree this year, and is showing no signs of stopping any time soon.
“Due to the strength of its balance sheet and its continuing cash generation, Playtech is in a position to return capital to shareholders with no impact on its ability to make acquisitions,” said Jackson.
In July, the online gambling technology provider dipped into its cash stockpile to pay €138 million for 90 percent of Austrian sports betting software outfit Best Gaming Technology, which provides proprietary software for about 24,000 self-service betting terminals in retail betting shops.