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Aristocrat records strong FY17, Big Fish acquisition

Gaming supplier Aristocrat Leisure said it achieved strong performance in its global portfolio, especially in the Americas, as well as its digital and international CIII segments, boosting profit and revenue in FY17.

Net profit after tax was A$543 million (US$410.7 million), representing growth of 36 percent year-on-year. Revenue reached A$2.5 billion, up 15.3 percent year-on-year, while EBITDA was A$1 billion, an increase of 24.2 percent.

Aristocrat said the increase in EBITDA showed the company’s sustained ability to grow revenue and leverage value through the P&L.

The company also said it anticipates continued growth in the 2018 fiscal year, with continued growth in its North America's business, maintenance of strong growth in the Digital business, growth in class II gaming operations, growth in earnings from its Plarium business, and more.

“Aristocrat delivered high quality results over the 2017 fiscal year, against a backdrop of mostly flat markets and increasing competitive pressure. Industry leading content, hardware and technology, coupled with effective execution focused on our highest value opportunities once again underpinned our performance,” said Trevor Croker, Aristocrat’s chief executive officer.

“Further growth in our core recurring revenue segments of gaming operations and digital social casino was particularly pleasing, with 52 percent of group revenues deriving from recurring sources during the year as well as growth in outright sales over the period. This represents further progress in ensuring Aristocrat delivers sustainable returns and cash flow over time, consistent with our strategy and shareholders’ interests.

On Thursday, the company also announced its acquisition of social gaming company Big Fish for US$990 million.

The acquisition will see Aristocrat become the world’s 2nd largest social casino publisher by revenue.

Big Fish is a wholly owned subsidiary of Churchill Downs Incorporated, a global publisher of free-to-play games that operate in social casino, social gaming and premium paid games.

“The strategic and financial benefits from the acquisition are highly compelling. The acquisition of Big Fish will immediately provide scale across our entire digital platform, following the recent acquisition of Plarium, which expanded our Digital business into the fast growing social gaming market,” said Croker.

“We are excited to work with the Big Fish team to take advantage of the opportunities this combination will create, and look forward to welcoming them to the Aristocrat family.

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