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Canada – Stars Group enjoys 34.8 per cent increase in second quarter

By - 14 August 2018

The Stars Group saw its revenues increase by 34.8 per cent year-over-year in its second quarter boosted by the World Cup, the new sports betting market in the US and developments for the company in Australia.

Poker revenues increased by 3.8 per cent, driven by the continued positive impact of the Stars Rewards loyalty program, foreign exchange fluctuations, and the introduction of shared poker liquidity in France and Spain in the first quarter and Portugal in the second quarter. These were offset by, among other things, the cessation of operations in Australia in September 2017 and Colombia in July 2017, and continued negative operating conditions in Poland due to certain prior regulatory changes in that jurisdiction.

Gaming revenue for the quarter was $101.9m, or an increase of 26.3 per cent year-over-year due to product and content improvements to PokerStars Casino, including the introduction of over 150 new casino games since the beginning of the year and the launch of PokerStars Casino in certain new markets.

Betting revenue for the quarter were $19.6m, or an increase of 122.2 per cent year-over-year. Excluding the impact of year-over-year changes in foreign exchange rates, Betting revenues for the quarter would have increased by 106.1 per cent due to the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

“The Stars Group’s quarterly results reflect both continued organic growth within our International business and the contributions of our Australian acquisitions,” stated Rafi Ashkenazi, The Stars Group’s Chief Executive Officer. “We continued enhancing our products and user experience across all verticals and executing on our cross-selling strategy.”

“The continued emergence of our sports betting and casino offerings and the addition of our 2018 acquisitions have transformed our business and greatly enhanced the foundation and diversity of our consolidated revenue base, which will now be nearly equally split among verticals and roughly 75% locally regulated or taxed,” said Mr. Ashkenazi.

“We are now focused on the next stage of our transformation—integration,” concluded Mr. Ashkenazi. “While this will be a phased and measured process, we expect that it will prepare us to not only be a leader within the world’s largest regulated markets but to also leverage the strength of our combined platform to take advantage of new opportunities and markets.”

The quarter saw two huge news pieces for the company with firstly the end of the 30-year ban on sports betting in the US. Currently, more than 20 states have either existing sports betting laws or have pending legislation to legalize or study sports betting. On August 2, 2018, The Stars Group and Resorts Casino Hotel announced the extension of their existing partnership in the New Jersey regulated online gaming market to include online and mobile sports wagering through the BetStars brand alongside the already existing online poker and casino offering available through the PokerStarsNJ brand. On August 10, 2018, The Stars Group and Mount Airy Casino Resort announced a partnership to enter Pennsylvania’s online sports wagering and gaming market, where The Stars Group will offer to customers in Pennsylvania its online poker, casino (including slots and tables) and sports wagering products.

Secondly, in Australia, the Stars Group increased its equity interest in CrownBet from 62 per cent to 80 per cent and CrownBet acquired William Hill Australia.

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