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US – IGT celebrates best ever global gaming product sales in 2019

By - 4 March 2020

International Game Technology achieved record global gaming product sales in 2019 although revenue was down one per cent to US$4.79bn.

The fourth quarter was also down $1.25bn to one per cent with significant growth in gaming product sales, sports betting and Italy commercial services offset by lower global gaming and lottery service revenue, which was impacted by high gaming machine taxes in Italy, the conclusion of the Illinois lottery contracts and exceptional North America multistate jackpot activity in the prior year.

“We achieved the high end of our profit and cash flow expectations for 2019, led by strong results for our North America Gaming and Italy segments,” said Marco Sala, CEO of IGT. “In the full year, we grew global gaming product sales by more than 20 per cent thanks to higher unit shipments and the success of our new games. Global lottery same-store revenue also rose. We are closely monitoring the impact of the Coronavirus outbreak. Apart from this, solid operational performance across products and regions should support continued momentum in 2020.”

In North America, replacement unit shipments increased by 13 per cent, the third consecutive year of growth, driven by titles such as Fortune Coin, Griffin’s Throne and Scarab.

Mr. Sala explained: “We achieved the highest average selling price in 12 years, based on the quality of our games coupled with broad acceptance of our Crystal Series cabinets. We expect this positive trend to continue in 2020. Hexbreaker 3 and Lucky Buddha, two of the most highly anticipated titles at G2E, were among the top selling games in the fourth quarter, and that maintained good momentum into this year.”

International replacement unit shipments were up 63 per cent in 2019. In addition to large Sweden VLT shipments, growth was fuelled by replacement sales to commercial gaming customers, which were up more than 20 per cent on broad-based geographic strength.

Mr. Sala added: “As in North America, the Crystal Series cabinets in games like Guardian of the Rose and Dragon Spear drove much of the growth. Our new Cobalt cabinet also made good early inroads in Eastern Europe and Latin America during the fourth quarter. In North America year-end installed base was essentially in line with prior year when adjusted for Oklahoma where we have adopted a new market strategy. Yields were higher due to the strong performance of new games, especially Wheel of Fortune Gold Spin and the MegaTower and Cash Link titles. In the fourth quarter we rolled out The Price is Right Showcase Showdown, an anchor of the broader Price Is Right assortment, which is performing very well.”

Looking to the future he added: “We are excited about the launches of Wheel of Fortune Mystery Link and Scarab Link on the new Peak Cabinets later this year. This is part of the robust strategy focus on multilink progressives where we are leveraging popular existing brands with a proven game mechanics. In the fourth quarter, we launched a few new multilink progressives including the two Candy Bars titles. We are confident we have the content and the funnel to further penetrate this growing segment of the market.”

Timothy Rishton, Interim CFO of IGT added: “2019 marked an important inflection in cash flows for IGT. Having generated $1.1bn in cash from operations, we invested in the business, paid down debt, and returned capital to shareholders. We enter 2020 in strong financial condition.”

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