Jackpotjoy narrows losses as Vera&John online casino shines

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jackpotjoy-vera&john-online-casinoUK-listed online gambling operator Jackpotjoy managed to narrow its net losses in Q3 thanks to strong growth in its online casino operations.

Figures released Tuesday show Jackpotjoy’s gaming revenue rising 14% year-on-year to £75.4m in the three months ending September 30. For the year-to-date, revenue is up 14% to £222m.

The Q3 revenue gains were primarily driven by its mainstay Jackpoyjoy online bingo segment, which saw revenue rise 4% to £52.2m, with most of the rise credited to “substantial growth and progression” of the Starspins and Botemania brands.

Organic growth, including new jurisdictions, at the Vera&John online casino segment drove its revenue up 28% to £18.4m. The Mandalay bingo business saw revenue decline 8% to £4.9m.

Jackpotjoy remains the company’s bread-and-butter, responsible for 69% of overall revenue, although Vera&John’s share improved nearly three points to 24% while Mandalay’s share dipped one point to 7%.

Adjusted earnings were up 4% in Q3 to £26.7m, with Vera&John leading the way with adjusted earnings growth of 40%. Mandalay’s earnings improved 36% thanks to lower marketing spend while Jackpotjoy eked out a mere 3% earnings rise due to September’s launch of a new TV marketing campaign.

The company is still saddled with over £312m in long-term debt from its 2015 acquisition of the Jackpot, Botemania and Starspins gaming brands from UK gaming operator Gamesys. Jackpotjoy paid over £9.6m in interest expenses in Q3, which contributed to the company reporting a net loss of £7.7m for the quarter, although that was less than half the £18.6m loss in the same period last year.

Jackpotjoy executive chairman Neil Goulden hailed Q3’s results as continuing the “strong underlying momentum” the company enjoyed in H1, and the company says it remains confident in meeting the upper end of market expectations for FY17, despite the looming imposition of point-of-consumption taxes on bonus offers in the UK market.

In October, Jackpotjoy announced that CEO Andrew McIver was leaving the firm. Goulden confirmed that McIver would step down from the board of directors as of December 31 but will remain with the company until January 31, 2019 to ensure a smooth transition for incoming managing director Simon Wykes.


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