Acroud publishes interim report Jul-Sep 2021: CONTINUED STRONG NDC GROWTH AND AN OUTLOOK ON THE DUTCH MARKET
Third Quarter 2021
- Revenue amounted to EUR 6 448 (2 376) thousand, corresponding to a growth of 172% (-32%) and an organic growth of +0.3% (-30.2%).
- EBITDA amounted to EUR 1 258 (961) thousand.
- Profit after tax was EUR 593 (327) thousand. Adjusted profit after tax (before currency effects) was EUR 482 (162) thousand.
- Earnings per share after dilution amounted to EUR 0.005 (0.004). Adjusted earnings per share (before currency effects) was EUR 0.004 (0.002).
- New Depositing Customers (NDC) amounted to 39 632 (5 312) increasing by 646% (-57%).
- Cash flow from operating activities amounted to EUR 664 (738) thousand. Cash flow from operating activities excluding one-off tax payment relating to acquisitions amounted to EUR 1 230 (738) thousand.
First nine months 2021
- Revenue amounted to EUR 18 227 (9 133) thousand, corresponding to a growth of 100% (-17%) and an organic growth of -13.2% (-16.7%).
- EBITDA amounted to EUR 3 857 (4 199) thousand. Adjusted EBITDA (before items affecting comparability related to acquisitions, reorganization and new share issues) was EUR 4 332 (4 758) thousand.
- Profit after tax was EUR 1 073 (1 941) thousand. Adjusted profit after tax (before items affecting comparability and currency effects) was EUR 1 326 (2 898) thousand.
- Earnings per share after dilution amounted to EUR 0.009 (0.026). Adjusted earnings per share (before items affecting comparability and currency effects) was EUR 0.011 (0.038).
- New Depositing Customers (NDC) amounted to 100 867 (25 013) increasing by 303% (-24%).
- Cash flow from operating activities amounted to EUR 2 641 (4 806) thousand. Cash flow from operating activities excluding one-off tax payments relating to acquisitions amounted to EUR 3 592 (4 806) thousand.
Important events during the quarter
- Acroud returns to the live events scene with the launch of the first edition of The Festival Series in Bratislava. By doing so, Acroud is strengthening its position as the bridge between land-based gaming and affiliation to create opportunities to connect operators with the player communities while also producing high-quality content to grow its digital flagship products, such as Pokerlistings. com. The inaugural week-long event has been a big success, with the Poker Main Event attracting 621 entries and relationships with various operators strengthened.
Important events after the quarter
- Dutch market, being one of the larger European markets, has opened on 1 October 2021. 10 operators were granted a license, with more licenses expected to be issued in Q1 2022.
- Roderick Attard has been appointed as new CFO of Acroud. Roderick had previously the position as Head of Finance and has profound industry knowledge from the iGaming industry and a background as auditor at KPMG.
CEO-comment: Strong QoQ NDC growth
I am happy to see that we continue to increase sales quarter on quarter reaching EUR 6 448k in the third quarter. Comparing the financial development year over year we increase sales from EUR 2 376k to EUR 6 448k and EBITDA from EUR 961k to EUR 1,258k, meaning a sales growth of 172% and EBITDA growth of 31%.
The New Depositing Customers numbers has shown a large quarter on quarter growth of 34% reaching almost 40,000, which clearly shows that we are on the right track. YoY the growth figures regarding NDCs are more than tenfold compared to last year. We have actively continued to invest in new growth initiatives for the future at the expense of short-term profitability with an EBITDA of EUR 1 258k, such as new SEO strategy and development of sites. It would be wrong to say that we are satisfied with the EBITDA level, however internally we are sure of our progress and underlying KPIs are showing strong trends which will bear fruit going forward. KPI’s such as the NDC figure as well as traffic levels within the iGaming Affiliation Segment increased sequentially by almost 50% in Q3 through improved rankings and our leads flow is also showing positive trends with an increase by 80%.
Re-opening of Dutch market
One of Europe’s larger markets has re-opened as of 1st October. The Dutch market has previously been an important market for Acroud with strong presence and local knowledge. During the summer 2020 we adapted our product offering to the new legal framework on the Dutch market which impacted our revenues negatively.
I believe what has caught people’s attention is how big the market seems to be, considering the information released by many operators in conjunction with the regulation coming into force. For me this shows “the power of the Dutch market”.
At first only 10 operators have been granted a license with the second and major batch of new operators estimated to be announced in the spring. The opening has been slower than expected, since there are so few license holders to begin with but the best way to describe the long term future is a “landgrab”, which puts affiliates in a favourable position and Acroud in particular.
Core operations and US
We are getting closer to taking the big leap forward. A proof of this is that we have seen a break-through in early Q4 and our additional SEO efforts have started to make a difference. Most notable is that we have managed to take one of our relatively new sites to be our larger assets in terms of both traffic and NDC’s. Our strategy is to work predominantly with hybrid- and revenue share deals, which is why it takes a while before the increases in NDC has a direct impact on our bottom-line.
We are currently replicating our new way of working on multiple sites, and we are already starting to see positive effects even if ramp up periods can be expected. Consequently, I am very positive to that we will see solid organic growth in our core affiliate business, where we operate with high margins, as well as restarting our growth in the US going forward during 2022.
Product and content strategy
The need to differentiate and strengthen the product offering is becoming clearer and clearer. The industry as such has historically been very bonus and offer-driven. We are now shifting to be more focused on rich content, product quality and genuine value creation. As part of this we are working tirelessly to add unique value to our products such as daily sports updates, live streams, betting tools as well as personalized experiences.
Another clear proof of this is the launch of The Festival Series. While being a physical event it is the bridge between land-based gaming and affiliation. The Festival Series drives our online presence significantly. The best way to describe it, is a massive on-line event over months which peaks in a week-long physical event. All qualifier events are on-line, our partners are on-line operators, and it creates very strong and unique content for our products such as Pokerlistings and The Gambling Cabin.
Continued focus on software-based affiliation
Looking at our SaaS segment and our focus on software- based affiliation we are seeing continued solid growth. Voonix and Matching Visions software have taken important steps in order to offer services in new verticals such as VPN services and E-sport streaming monetization. While some of our competitors have tried and failed, our business model and software opens-up completely new ways of earning money for already established e-sport streamers, and our initial business partnership are so far proving our idea right.
To sum up where we stand at the moment, I can conclude that we have put a very eventful quarter behind us, integration and operational wise. The fruit of the hard work has started to pay off reaching 40,000 NDCs in Q3, which means that the EBITDA impact will come over time. In addition, after closing the third quarter the Dutch market has re-opened, which we will consider to be one of our core markets going forward.
Altogether the future holds massive opportunities for us - so stay tuned!
Robert Andersson Malta, 11 November 2021
CEO Robert Andersson will present the report, followed by a Q&A session. The presentation will be held in English and will be webcasted live through www.acroud.com or via https://tv.streamfabriken.com/acroud-q3-2021.
The join the conference via phone, please dial-in using any of the numbers below:
From Sweden: +46856642707
From UK: +443333009269
From the US: +1 6319131422 PIN: 42734059#
The webcast and the presentation slides will be published on www.acroud.com after the webcast, where you also can view and listen to the webcast on demand.
This information constitutes inside information that Acroud AB (publ) is required to disclose under the EU Market Abuse Regulation 596/2014. The information in this press release has been published through the agency of the contact persons below, at the time specified by Acroud AB’s (publ) news distributor Cision for publication of this press release. The persons below may also be contacted for further information.
For further information, please contact:
Robert Andersson, President and CEO
+356 9999 8017
Roderick Attard, CFO
+356 7925 4722
ACROUD AB (publ)
Telephone: +356 2132 3750/1
From August 2021 (Q221 Report) report Acroud has changed reporting and company language to English. This means that onwards press releases will only be communicated in English. However, Interim Reports and the correlated press releases will be issued in both English and Swedish, however the English version will supersede the Swedish version.
About ACROUD AB
ACROUD is a fast-growing global challenger that operates and develops +30 comparison and news sites within Poker, Sports Betting and Casino. In 2021, Acroud launched The Festival Series which is a competitive Sports Betting, Casino and Poker Experience taking place in different destinations in Europe. Acroud also offers SaaS (Software as a Service) solutions for the iGaming affiliate industry. In 2020 and 2021, a number of companies have joined the ride and thus several experienced individuals in the industry leads Acroud's journey to become "The Mediahouse of The Future". Our mission is to connect people, Content Creators (Youtubers, Streamers, Affiliates) and businesses. We are growing fast and is a leading global player in the industry with just over 90 people in Malta, Denmark and Sweden. Acroud has been listed on the Nasdaq First North Growth Market since June 2018.