By Andy Young

Positive momentum in North America and "outstanding growth" in Australia have seen gaming operator Aristocrat Leisure post a $236.1 million profit, up 78.9 per cent on last year.

The company said that the strong performance for the full year ended 30 September 2015 was driven by the successful acquisition and integration of the Video Gaming Technologies (VGT) business in North America.

The acquisition of VGT, which currently holds a strong position in the Native American Casino market, has created an additional revenue stream for the company.

The Native American Casinos allow Aristocrat to take a cut of the Class II machines profits giving the company a new revenue stream that is unprecedented in Australia. The VGT operated Class II machines are unlike Australian poker machines in that Class II gaming generates results from an electronic bingo game rather than a random number generator.

Aristocrat CEO Jamie Odell said: "Aristocrat delivered outstanding performance over the 12 months to 30 September 2015, further extending our trajectory of consistent and high quality NPATA growth.

"Over the course of the year, the business continued to focus on the things within our control, namely broadening and deepening our core portfolio, improving front-end effectiveness, investing in outstanding talent and entrenching a high performance culture. Our strengthening operational performance delivered market-leading share growth and stronger returns across key segments during the period.

"During the reporting period, Aristocrat exited distracting business and increased our focus on core Class II, Class III and Digital operations. We also made significant progress in reducing our reliance on one-off sales and driving recurring revenues. The percentage of revenue Aristocrat derives from recurring sources has already grown from under 24 per cent at 30 September 2014 to over 45 per cent at the 2015 full year.

"In addition, recent strategic investments – most particularly the successful acquisition and integration of VGT – together with increased, targeted D&D spend – have delivered ahead of our expectations."

Odell also suggested that the recent growth experienced by Aristocrat will enable the business to investigate further investment opportunities.

He added: "The growth in the Group’s recurring revenue base and strong cash flows provide the business with the capacity to consider additional organic and inorganic investments over the coming period, consistent with our strategy and shareholders' interests."

As a result of the financial year profits Aristocrat’s directors have authorised a final dividend for the second half of the year of 9.0 cents per share, resulting in a full-year dividend of 17.0 cents per share.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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