The Stars Group, owners of the PokerStars brand, celebrated an evolutional and transformational year with revenues for the quarter and year increasing by 16.1 per cent and 13.6 per cent respectively.
“2017 marked our evolution and transformation into The Stars Group,” said Rafi Ashkenazi, Chief Executive Officer. “We maintained our global dominance in online poker, with the business experiencing year-over-year growth in that vertical, our online casino has already become one of the largest in the world since its launch in 2014, and our emerging online sportsbook not only recorded meaningful growth in turnover and revenues, but started to become a secondary customer acquisition channel.”
“During the year, we strengthened our core senior management team, delivered another year of record revenues, significantly deleveraged and continued to strengthen our balance sheet, all while investing in marketing, growth initiatives and technology infrastructure to support the long-term growth of our business,” added Mr. Ashkenazi. “In 2018, we are continuing to execute on our growth initiatives, including through geographic expansion, inorganic growth, and improving our focus on and understanding of our customers, and we are beginning to realize our goal of becoming the world’s favourite iGaming destination.”
Real-money online poker revenues for the quarter were $234.4m, or an increase of approximately 7.9 per cent year-over-year, and $877.3mfor the year, or an increase of approximately 3.7 per cent year-over-year. In 2017, The Stars Group saw a positive impact from its previously announced strategy of focusing on recreational players and the introduction of Stars Rewards, which helped counter certain regulatory headwinds, including the cessation of operations in certain markets, such as Australia and Colombia.
Real-money online casino and sportsbook combined revenues for the quarter were $112.5m, or an increase of approximately 40.3 per cent year-over-year, and $384m for the year, or an increase of approximately 45.4 per cent year-over-year. Excluding the impact of year-over-year changes in foreign exchange rates, real-money online casino and sportsbook combined revenues would have increased by approximately 28.9 per cent for the quarter and 42.2 per cent for the year. In 2017, growth in real-money online casino and sportsbook combined revenues was driven primarily by a combination of geographic expansion and product improvements.