Not long ago, WMS Industries
For its fiscal first quarter, WMS saw net income rise 16% to $7.1 million or $0.20 per share, including a $0.03 charge related to recent management changes. Excluding charges, WMS's results compare favorably to the analyst estimate of $0.21 per share. The company also reported a 6% increase in revenues to $110.6 million, driven by a healthy 25% jump in revenues from gaming operations to $42 million. (Get a full breakdown of the numbers).
Think about that last number for a second. Just a few years ago, in WMS's fiscal 2004, its revenues from gaming operations for the entire year totaled just $84 million. And thanks to the rapid rollout of new wide-area progressive (WAP) and local-area progressive (LAP) products -- including Powerball (WAP and LAP), Jackpot Party (LAP), and now Green Acres (LAP) -- the average installed base of recurring revenues machines was up 18% to 7,000 units. The WAP and LAP machines, which are higher-yielding than the stand-alone participation slots, now account for nearly 50% of the total installed base. Meanwhile, the average revenue per day per participating machine increased 7% to $58.55. In fiscal 2005, the win per day per machine was $47.31; in fiscal 2004, the win per day per machine was $39.60.
WMS has also come on strong in the mechanical slot arena. Just a year ago, this sector was dominated by International Game Technology
Among other new products, WMS shipped its first server-based gaming product, the Monopoly Big Event, featuring a communal bonus. Going forward, the company also has its sights set on the three-reel mechanical market, with new multi-line three-reel mechanicals, as well as "transmissive" mechanical reel slots due later this year.
New and emerging markets are also key. Sales to international markets accounted for 32% of new unit shipments in the first quarter. And now the racinos in Pennsylvania and Florida are finally coming online; five of the six racinos in Pennsylvania will open slot operations within WMS' current fiscal 2007. WMS also recently shipped slots to the first two of four new racinos in South Florida, claiming a 20% share.
With the opening of the new racinos, WMS initiated second-quarter guidance for revenue growth of 15% to 19% to between $130 million and $135 million. The company also raised its full-year forecast to revenues of $525 million to $540 million, representing growth of 16% to 20% for the year. The company said that sales to Pennsylvania amounted to between $15 million and $17 million of upside over its previous guidance.
Between the positive earnings and the upbeat outlook -- as well as the expanding margins -- investors are receiving confirmation that WMS' story is for real. The result is that WMS shares are up 12% today to near $35, a new 52-week high.
For related coverage, check out:
- The New WMS Industries: Part 1 and Part 2
- The Magnitude of Pennsylvania's Slots
- From the Florida Gaming Summit
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