International sales help Light & Wonder profits soar

May 9, 2024 12:13 PM
  • David McKee, CDC Gaming Reports
May 9, 2024 12:13 PM
  • David McKee, CDC Gaming Reports

First-quarter profits at game-maker Light & Wonder vaulted from $27 million last year to $82 million, according to numbers released by the company yesterday. Revenue was up from $670 million to $756 million and cash flow grew from $241 million to $289 million.

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International sales of gambling devices drove a 14 percent jump in revenues for Light & Wonder’s gaming division. Overseas-derived revenue leapt 30 percent.

The company’s SciPlay division contributed $206 million, an 11 percent lift. Setting a record for the company was its igaming performance, up 14 percent to $74 million.

In a prepared statement, CEO Matt Wilson summarized the quarter. “Our strong momentum continued into 2024 across the business with our compelling global product offerings, driving game-sales growth in North American-adjacent markets and in international markets led by Australia and Asia. SciPlay and igaming both reached record revenue levels yet again with consistent double-digit year-over-year growth.

“The performance in the quarter validates our execution plan and we expect growth to be further enhanced by key hardware and content launches in both our land-based and digital markets throughout the year.”

Added CFO Oliver Chow, “We remain on a healthy growth trajectory, with six consecutive quarters of double-digit revenue growth in gaming, SciPlay and igaming, a testament to the power of our R&D engine. … Given our strong growth and the highly cash-generative nature of our business, we plan to further enhance value through our share repurchase program, while maintaining the rigor of our strategic capital allocation plan.”

Light & Wonder had $3.9 billion in long-term debt, for a debt-to-EBITDA ratio of three times cash flow. The company also spent $25 million to repurchase 200,000 shares.