"This was a landmark quarter during a transformative year for the company as we begin to deliver on our vision to become the world's favorite iGaming destination," stated Rafi Ashkenazi, The Stars Group's Chief Executive Officer. "We completed our acquisition of Sky Betting & Gaming, which was cleared by the CMA in October, making us the leader in the UK online betting and gaming market. We also launched BetEasy in Australia and sports betting in New Jersey."
"We are pleased with our quarterly results, which reflect both continued organic growth from our International business and contributions from both BetEasy and Sky Betting & Gaming, despite unfavorable sporting results during the period," said Mr. Ashkenazi.
"As we continue our transformation and look towards 2019, we are excited to take advantage of the opportunities ahead of us by leveraging our leading positions in attractive markets, strong brands, technology and operating expertise," concluded Mr. Ashkenazi.
Third Quarter 2018 Summary (Consolidated)
Total Revenues – Revenues for the quarter increased 73.6% year-over-year primarily as a result of the contribution of revenue from the acquisitions of Sky Betting & Gaming ("SBG") and BetEasy, as well as organic growth in the International segment.
Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA Margin – Adjusted EBITDA for the quarter increased 27.3% year-over-year, primarily driven by the impact of the acquisitions of SBG and BetEasy and by increased gross profit from organic growth within the International segment. Adjusted EBITDA Margin for the quarter decreased 26.7% year-over-year, primarily driven by the higher contribution from the Betting and Gaming verticals within each segment.
Consolidated Debt and Cash – The total principal amount owing on long-term debt outstanding at the end of the quarter was $5.65 billion with a carrying value of $5.52 billion. The Stars Group ended the third quarter of 2018 with approximately $419 million in operational cash on its balance sheet, which translated into Net Debt of $5.1 billion. Subsequent to the quarter end, on October 24, 2018, The Stars Group fully repaid the $100 million outstanding on its revolving credit facility using cash on its balance sheet.
U.S. Sports Betting Update – 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. On September 13, 2018, The Stars Group launched its BetStars online sports betting brand in New Jersey through its partnership with Resorts Casino Hotel. The offering, which is initially available through mobile, provides New Jersey customers with an innovative and robust mobile-led sportsbook alongside The Stars Group's already existing online poker and casino offerings available through the PokerStarsNJ and PokerStars Casino NJ brands.
Sky Betting & Gaming Update – On July 10, 2018, The Stars Group completed the previously announced Sky Betting & Gaming acquisition for $4.7 billion, and on October 11, 2018, the UK Competition & Markets Authority cleared the acquisition, allowing The Stars Group to begin executing on its integration plans. As it relates to the previously announced expected synergies of at least $70 million, The Stars Group currently believes that approximately 53% will relate to headcount and other staff costs, 23% to purchasing costs and 24% to other cost savings. In addition, The Stars Group currently estimates that it may achieve approximately $5 million of such synergies before year end, followed by a further $50 million in 2019 and an additional $15 million in 2020. The Stars Group continues to expect approximately $85 million in implementation costs to achieve those synergies, with the majority of such costs being incurred in 2019.