orldwide new unit shipments rose to a quarterly record 7,793 gaming machines. For the quarter ended March 31, the Waukegan maker of gaming machines had net income of us$ 18.8 million, up from us$ 12.9 million a year earlier.
Revenue rose 27 percent, to us$ 172.8 million from us$ 136.6 million in the year-ago quarter. Its per-share earnings performance topped by 2 cents the 30 cents analysts had been anticipating. The company's revenue come from two sources: sale of its video and reel-spinning gambling machines and other gambling equipment, and revenue from leased machines in gambling venues.
Equipment sales climbed 21 percent, to us$ 113.6 million, WMS said, as unit shipments set a new quarterly record. Gambling "participation" revenue from its leased equipment rose 39 percent, to us$ 59.2 million. WMS also said Tuesday that Louis J. Nicastro will retire from the chairman's post July 1; the position will go to President and CEO Brian Gamache.
"WMS' record fiscal 2008 third quarter operating results and fiscal 2008 year-to-date performance highlight the strength, breadth and industry attraction of our innovative product portfolio. Record quarterly new unit shipments and gaming operations revenues along with the success of the company's operating effectiveness initiatives are delivering tangible benefits to our stockholders at this time, while furthering WMS' foundation for continued long-term growth," said Gamache.
He added, "WMS' product development, production and commercial sales teams continue to demonstrate industry leadership in creating and delivering appealing products for players and customers on a global basis. The commitment of our entire team, along with our pipeline of exciting and differentiated products, supports our expectation that WMS will continue to build long-term stockholder value.”
"We are raising our fiscal 2008 total revenue guidance to a range of us$ 640-to-us$ 645 million from the previous range of us$ 620-to-us$ 632 million, reflecting our success in the first nine months of fiscal 2008 and the ongoing momentum of our high-performing products. Our increased guidance represents annual revenue growth of approximately 19% and implies fiscal 2008 fourth quarter revenue of us$ 175-to-us$ 180 million, which also considers the impact from an uncertain economy and the continued industry challenges associated with a slow North American replacement cycle," he concluded.