Q1 Profits Soar for Canada Internet Betting Firm Amaya

Profits Soar for Canada Internet Betting Firm AmayaThings are looking way up these days for Amaya Inc., the Canada internet betting giant that owns PokerStars. According to the latest financial reports, the company experienced a substantial rise in first quarter (Q1) revenue, attributed largely to a spike in customer activity.

“We continued our momentum in the first quarter as we execute on our strategy and reinforce the foundation for sustainable and diversified revenue growth, including through the strengthening of our core management team and operations,” said Amaya CEO Rafi Ashkenazi in this morning’s release of the Q1 Revenue Report.

“Our company also continues to evolve through corporate initiatives to deliver the greatest value for our shareholders,” he added.

Amaya Beats Analysts’ Predictions

For the first three months, ending March 31, 2017, Amaya reported a rise in income to US $65.8 million, or $0.33 per share. Those figures represent an 18.5% increase over last year’s Q1 revenue, totaling US $55.5 million, or $0.28 per share.

Overall, with items excluded, Amaya said it profited to the tune of $0.56 per share on the quarter, coming in $0.04 higher than the average $0.52 profit projected by stock market analysts.

It had been estimated that the Canada internet betting firm’s revenue would rise year over year (YoY) to US $316.7 million in Q1. Revenue reports indicated a higher 10% increase to $317.3 million.

Amaya Q1 YoY Revenue 2016-17

Source: Amaya Inc First Quarter 2017 Financial Summary

The Financial Post noted Amaya’s admission in March to discovering what it called “material weaknesses” in its internal control systems governing financial reports for the Q4 period ending December 31, 2016. On Friday, Amaya said it is in the process of correcting those deficiencies, and that they should be resolved by the end of the second quarter.

Customer Activity on Steady Incline

The Canada internet betting firm said the greater than anticipated revenue is largely due to, “customer acquisition, engagement and reactivation initiatives.”

Amaya recorded approximately 3 million new registered members on its multi-jurisdictional iGaming websites, including PokerStars, BetStars, Full Tilt and StarsDraft. Amaya’s sites now boast 111 million registers users and growing.

In terms of active membership, Amaya reported a 5% increase in wagering activity. The company said 2.7 million of its registered users were actively betting across Amaya-owned sites in Q1-17.

The break-down of increased customer activity is as follows:

  • Online poker up 2% YoY to 2.5 million active members

  • Online casino up 42% YoY to 664k active members

  • Online sportsbook up 64% to 277k active members

Re-Branding the Canada Internet Betting Giant

On top of all this good news, Amaya Inc. also issued a notice of intention to re-brand its corporate name to “The Stars Group Inc.

The company said the official notice of re-branding will appear in the upcoming 2017 management information circular. The initial notice is meant to give shareholders a heads-up, as they will eventually vote on this and other intended changes in future shareholder meetings.

Furthermore, in an effort “to more effectively manage its business and affairs,” the Canada internet betting firm is looking to relocate from its current headquarters in Montreal, Quebec, to a new head office in Toronto, Ontario,

If approved by shareholders, Amaya “intends to effect a continuance under the Business Corporations Act (Ontario) such that it will become an Ontario corporation and subject to such act”.

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