Financial highlights from the company's interim statement this week show:
* Total Revenues up by 85 percent to $81.4 million (2007 - $44 million)
* Casino revenues up by 78 percent to $58 million (2007 - $32.6 million)
* Poker revenues up by 109 percent to $22 million (2007 - $10.5 million)
* Adjusted net profit before tax up by 90 percent to $57.8 million (2007: $30.4 million), reflecting improved margins. The adjusted net profit excludes various non cash items unrelated to the underlying cash trading performance totalling $19.9 million (H1 2007: $4.4 million)
* Adjusted basic EPS of 26.3 cents per share (2007: 14 cents per share)
Interim dividend of 12 cents per share equating to approximately US$28.5 million to be paid in October 2008 (2007: 6.1 cents per share) representing 50% of the adjusted net profit, which represents the true underlying business
Operational achievements included:
* Playtech raised $222.4 million (GBP112 million), before expenses, by way of a Placing of 21 620 946 new Ordinary Shares at a price of 520 pence per share (see previous InfoPowa report) The net proceeds of the Placing are to be utilised to finance acquisition opportunities
* Playtech is still carrying out DD on an affiliate company which it may acquire, and so far progress has been satisfactory. Based on the target's current trading, the transaction would be earnings accretive and significantly enhance Playtech's market position.
* 10 new licence agreements have been signed so far in 2008, including well established operators such as Betsson, Vista Global Limited, the group behind the celebrity endorsed Hollywood Poker brand, Genting Stanley Alderney, a subsidiary of Genting International, and SNAI S.R.L, the leading Italian land based operator, which will lead to a prominent position in the Italian market
* Additional new licensees expected to launch during H2: 2008.
* 3 additional licensees launched since Q2 KPIs, including two licensees migrated from competitors.
* Strong pipeline of potential licensees with a further 8 MOU's signed so far in 2008 in line with Playtech's focus on well established online gaming operators and leading operators in regulated markets.
* Commenced software approval process in various regulated jurisdictions.
* Launch of Asian P2P in August and continuing rollout currently underway.
* Development of Flash Poker product completed. Rollout during Q3 2008.
* Established a new games software development unit which will significantly increase the number and frequency of games released to Playtech licensees.
* Exclusive licensing agreement signed with Paramount Digital Entertainment, which will enable Playtech licensees to offer games featuring two very well-known Paramount Pictures brands, "Gladiator" and "The Untouchables"
* iPoker now claimed as the world's largest poker liquidity pool (excluding the US)
* Appointment of Deutsche Bank as joint broker. Deutsche Bank will work alongside Playtech's existing Nominated Adviser and broker, Collins Stewart Europe Limited.
Playtech chief Mor Weizer said: "We are very pleased to welcome Deutsche Bank on board as joint broker working alongside Collins Stewart. We have the highest opinion of both companies and we look forward to a productive working relationship."
Releasing the half yearly report, Weizer commented: "We are very pleased with these results, which demonstrate Playtech's continued progress as the world's leading software provider to the gaming market. Playtech is ideally placed to capitalise on the opportunities provided by the fast-growing global gaming market. The company has potential for far more significant growth and its unique business model places it in a strong position. The Board looks forward to the future with confidence."
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