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Great Canadian Gaming Announces First Quarter 2019 Results

George Miller

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Great Canadian Gaming Announces First Quarter 2019 Results
Reading Time: 5 minutes

 

Great Canadian Gaming Corporation announced its financial results for the three month period ended March 31, 2019 (the “first quarter”).

 

FIRST QUARTER 2019 HIGHLIGHTS

  • Revenues of $312.1 million in the first quarter, an increase of 35% when compared to the same period in the prior year.
  • Adjusted EBITDA(1)(2)  of $111.6 million in the first quarter, which included a $20.8 million positive impact from IFRS 16 adoption. Adjusted EBITDA of $88.9 million in the same prior year period.
  • Shareholders’ net earnings(2) of $32.6 million or $0.55 per common share in the first quarter, which had a $2.2 million or $0.04 per common share negative impact from IFRS 16 adoption.  Shareholders’ net earnings of $29.2 million or $0.48 per common share in the same prior year period.
  • On April 24, 2019, Great Canadian announced that it has completed agreements with the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (“OLG”) and the owners of Ajax Downs racetrack to continue operations at Casino Ajax beyond the opening of the Company’s new casino resort property currently under development in Pickering, Ontario.
  • On April 26, 2019, the Company announced an agreement to sell its subsidiary Great American Gaming Corporation (“Great American”) for proceeds of US$56.0 million.
  • On January 23, 2019, Great Blue Heron Casino opened its new building addition to expand the gaming floor, which introduced over 200 new slot machines and a new food and beverage option.
  • During the first quarter of 2019, Elements Casino Mohawk and Elements Casino Grand River added approximately 290 slot machines and 190 slot machines, respectively.
  • During the first quarter of 2019, the Company purchased for cancellation 136,810 common shares at a weighted average price of $48.49 per share. The Company has purchased a total of 3,582,462 common shares under the current normal course issuer bid which expires on July 2, 2019.

“With a successful 2018 behind us, the Company remains focused on the execution of its operational and development plans for 2019 and beyond,” stated Rod Baker, the Company’s Chief Executive Officer. “This includes the upcoming launch of the new world-class casino resort in Pickering, Ontario as well as several exciting facility and operational upgrades to our recently acquired properties in Ontario.  We also worked diligently with OLG to extend operations at Ajax Downs beyond the opening of Pickering, allowing this gaming and horse racing facility – that was previously expected to close – to continue making economic contributions to the community it serves. Despite the strong progress made to grow the business, our first quarter in 2019 experienced challenges from the extreme weather conditions, which negatively impacted guest visitation at our Ontario gaming facilities.”

______________________________

(1)

Adjusted EBITDA is a non-IFRS measure as described in the disclaimer section of this press release.

(2)

2019 financial results reflect the adoption of IFRS 16, Leases as described in the Financial Review section of this press release. Comparative information has not been adjusted for IFRS 16

FINANCIAL REVIEW

Revenues increased during the first quarter of 2019, when compared to the same period in the prior year, primarily attributable to a full quarter of operations from the West GTA Gaming Bundle, 22 additional operating days from the GTA Gaming Bundle, and new revenues from the introduction of table games at Woodbine. Revenues also increased from the East Gaming Bundle due to the additional revenues from Shorelines Casino Peterborough, which opened on October 15, 2018 and Shorelines Slots at Kawartha Downs, which re-opened under agreed terms on December 19, 2018.  These increases were partially offset by the previously mentioned extreme weather conditions in the first quarter of 2019.

Adjusted EBITDA increased during the first quarter, when compared to the same period in the prior year, mainly due to the accounting impact of IFRS 16, the new lease accounting standard adopted on January 1, 2019. Readers are cautioned that the financial results for the comparative period in 2018 have not been adjusted for IFRS 16.

Implementation of IFRS 16:

IFRS 16 specifies how to recognize, measure, present and disclose leases.  The standard provides a single lessee accounting model, requiring lessees to recognize assets and liabilities for all material leases.

The following are the key changes in the first quarter due to adoption of IFRS 16:

  • On January 1, 2019, the Company recognized right-of-use assets and lease liabilities of $996.0 million and $947.3 million, respectively.
  • Adjusted EBITDA was increased by $20.8 million due to certain lease payments, previously recognized as “property, marketing and administration” expense, being recorded against lease liabilities.
  • Amortization expense was increased by $14.2 due to amortization of right-of-use assets, and interest and financing costs, net, was increased by $12.4 due to interest accretion on lease liabilities.
  • Net earnings was decreased by $5.0 million and Shareholders’ Net earnings was decreased by $2.2 million.

See Great Canadian’s Condensed Interim Consolidated Financial Statements and Management’s Discussion & Analysis for the three months ended March 31, 2019 for further information.

OUTLOOK

“We continue to execute on our comprehensive development plans in the GTA and West GTA Gaming Bundles, with construction underway at several gaming facilities,” said Mr. Baker. “Development plans for the gaming facilities in these bundles will expand gaming offerings and introduce an exciting mix of hospitality and entertainment features at the properties that will deliver exceptional guest experiences within our respective markets.  Construction of the new world-class casino resort in the Durham region located in Pickering, Ontario is well underway.  Elements Casino Mohawk is expected to launch expanded gaming in the second quarter of 2019, and will feature approximately 1,500 slot machines and 60 table games once renovations are complete.”

“Great Canadian’s enhanced capital structure after its corporate refinancing in the fourth quarter of 2018 has given the Company additional financial flexibility to invest in our business as well as pursue other opportunities to enhance value. In the fourth quarter of 2018, we utilized $40.0 million of capacity on our revolving credit facility to repurchase shares under the normal course issuer bid which was fully repaid in the first quarter of 2019, demonstrating our disciplined approach to use of capital that has allowed us to maintain our strong financial position.  Great Canadian continues to make meaningful investments and explore opportunities that will drive its business forward and provide added value to our shareholders and guests, as evidenced by the recent divestiture of Great American,” concluded Mr. Baker.

CONFERENCE CALL

Great Canadian will host a conference call for investors and analysts today, May 6, 2019, at 8:00 AM Pacific Time in order to review the financial results for the quarter ended March 31, 2019. To participate in the conference call, please dial 416-764-8688, 778-383-7413, or toll free at 1-888-390-0546.  Questions will be reserved for analysts and institutional investors. Interested parties may also access the call via the Investor Relations section of the Company’s website, www.gcgaming.com.  Investors using the website should allow 15 minutes for the registration and installation of any necessary software. A replay of the call will also be available at www.gcgaming.com.

 

ABOUT GREAT CANADIAN GAMING CORPORATION:

Founded in 1982, Great Canadian Gaming Corporation is a BC based company that operates 28 gaming, entertainment and hospitality facilities in Ontario, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Washington State. Fundamental to the Company’s culture is its commitment to social responsibility. “PROUD of our people, our business, our community” is Great Canadian’s brand that unifies the Company’s community, volunteering and social responsibility efforts. Under the PROUD program, Great Canadian annually supports hundreds of non-profits, community groups, and in 2018, Great Canadian team members spent over 15,000 hours volunteering for various charitable and community initiatives. In each Canadian gaming jurisdiction, a significant portion of gross gaming revenue from gaming facilities is retained by our Crown partners on behalf of their provincial government for the purpose of supporting programs like healthcare, education and social services.

Please refer to the Condensed Interim Consolidated Financial Statements and Management’s Discussion and Analysis at www.gcgaming.com or www.sedar.com (available on May 6, 2019) for detailed financial information and analysis.

The financial results on the following page are unaudited and prepared by management. Expressed in millions of Canadian dollars, except for per share information.

 

Source: Great Canadian Gaming Corporation

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