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Borussia Dortmund

Das Wunder von Dortmund is still alive

Update | Travel & Leisure | 08 Mar 2019

The recent dip in form (one win in eight games) risks distracting from Borussia Dortmund's highly successful season with a new head coach and a developing squad. While disappointment is understandable, given raised expectations, the share price upset (down over 25% from its November peak) appears exaggerated as Dortmund (BVB) remains well-placed for its Bundesliga title challenge and has already all but secured Champions League participation for next season, its overriding KPI. Moreover, we are now raising forecasts to reflect the buoyancy of international TV marketing and January's bumper transfer of Pulisic. Transfermarkt.de's new €45m upgrade in squad valuation, highlighted by Sancho (18) as most valuable Bundesliga player (€80m), suggests more to come, reinforcing EV/EBITDA of under 6x FY19e as unbecoming of BVB's brand and financial strengths.

bet-at-home

Consistent cash generation

Initiation | Travel & Leisure | 07 Mar 2019

bet-at-home (BAH) is a long-established European sports betting brand, successfully cross-selling into gaming. Regulatory risks are high, as witnessed by IP blocking in Poland and Switzerland and the company has issued guidance of a c 10o20% decline in EBITDA for FY19. Nonetheless, BAH has consistently produced strong operating cash flow and its ability to pay high dividends is very attractive. The stock is up 28% ytd and trades at 14.9x P/E, 10.9x EV/EBITDA and 8.5% dividend yield for FY19e.

OPAP

Exclusivity pays dividends

Initiation | Technology | 28 Feb 2019

OPAP is Europe’s only listed gaming operator with 100% pre-paid exclusive retail licences, providing significant barriers to entry. Despite softness in Greek retail spending, management has successfully defended profits through product enhancements and cost controls. OPAP is halfway through its 2020 Vision plan to create a leading gaming entertainment company and further momentum is underway with full deployment of video lottery terminals (VLTs), as well as a move into online. The stock tracked the Greek market down 27% in 2018, but has recovered by c 17% ytd. The business is highly cash generative, with the bulk of FCF paid out as dividends. We estimate a FY19 dividend yield of 8.3%, excluding specials.

Mercia Technologies

UK video games - Heterogeneous not homogeneous

Sector Commentary: | Consumer Support Services | 26 Feb 2019

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Stride Gaming

Trading broadly in line

Update | Travel & Leisure | 06 Feb 2019

Stride’s AGM confirmed that trading for the current financial year has been broadly in line, despite well documented regulatory headwinds. To counterbalance rising gaming taxes and other sector pressures, the group is implementing numerous cost-cutting initiatives, which will be key to hitting our FY19 EBITDA estimate. Looking ahead, we expect growth to resume in FY20 (once many regulatory burdens have been lapped) and we believe Stride will take market share within a disrupted industry. Cash conversion is c 90% and the new payout policy leads to a 15.0% yield in FY19 (including the special dividend). The stock continues to trade at a meaningful discount to peers, at 3.7x EV/EBITDA and 6.5x P/E for CY19e.

Game Digital

Resilience over the peak trading period

Update | Consumer Support Services | 17 Jan 2019

Against a challenging retail landscape, Game Digital (GMD) delivered a solid sales performance and growth in higher-margin categories over the peak trading period, alongside ongoing cost efficiencies, which continue to counter trading pressures. Momentum in the BELONG roll-out, which accounts for a significant part of our 67p valuation, remains crucial.

Keywords Studios

Affected by industry flux but still performing well

Update | Technology | 21 Dec 2018

Trading in H2 was affected in some areas by flux in the games industry, so although the overall picture remains relatively healthy (we est 8% l-f-l revenue growth, 49% EPS growth for FY18) FY18 revenues and PBT are expected to be 2% and 6% below our respective forecasts. Looking through this disruption, we still believe Keywords remains attractively positioned in a games industry that should continue to deliver robust growth. There remains plenty of scope for Keywords to continue accretive M&A, as demonstrated by the acquisition of games marketing services specialist, Sunny Side Up for C$5.9m (c EUR 3.8m) for c 4.9x trailing EBITDA.

Stride Gaming

Strong cash flow and special dividend

Update | Travel & Leisure | 21 Nov 2018

Stride’s FY18 results statement was dominated by the impact of recent regulatory news, as well as by the decision to significantly increase cash payouts. Our FY19 estimates now reflect a GBP 7.1m fine for procedural failings (vs GBP 4m previously), as well an additional five months of higher remote gaming duty (RGD), which equates to a one-off hit of GBP 2.5m. None of this affects FY20 and, given Stride’s competitive positioning, we believe it should achieve market share gains and we raise our FY20 EBITDA from GBP 14.5m to GBP 16.0m. A special dividend of 8p has been announced, and going forward, Stride intends to pay out at least 50% of adjusted net earnings. The stock has bounced from its lows, but still trades at 5.0x EV/EBITDA and 8.0x P/E for CY19e.

bet-at-home

Guidance maintained with strong Q318

QuickView | Travel & Leisure | 19 Nov 2018

bet-at-home is a long-established sports betting brand, successfully crosssellinginto gaming. On the back of the FIFA World Cup, the company hasproduced a strong Q318, with gross gaming revenues (GGR) of €37.6m anda record EBITDA of €13.0m. Regulatory risks remain high, as witnessed bylast year's IP blocking in Poland, but we are encouraged that FY18guidance has been maintained. Largely due to regulatory concerns, thestock is down c 40% ytd, trading at 9.4x EV/EBITDA and 12.5x P/E for2018e. This is at the top end of the peer group, but the company's strongcash position and ability to pay special dividends is very attractive.

Carclo

FY19 likely to be a game of two halves

Update | Technology | 16 Nov 2018

As flagged in the October trading update, Carclo’s H119 performance was adversely affected by delays in commencing three medical programmes. Moreover, all of the new vehicle production programmes planned for FY19, with their attendant start-up inefficiencies, started during the first six months. While these events held back first-half performance, they augur well for a second-half recovery. We therefore leave our estimates broadly unchanged. The reduction in our indicative valuation from144-153p to 125-133p reflects a 24% drop in the prospective P/E multiple for automotive peers since June, rather than a change in Carclo’s investment proposition.

JPJ Group plc

Remote gaming duty increases in April 2019

Update | Travel & Leisure | 15 Nov 2018

Following the resignation of Sports Minister Tracey Crouch, the UK government has bowed to pressure to bring forward the reduction in FOBT stake limits, from October 2019 to April 2019. To coincide with the FOBT changes, the planned increase in remote gaming duty (from 15% to 21%) will also commence in April. We reduce our FY19e EBITDA by a further £6m but our FY20 estimates are unchanged. JPJ shares have fallen by c 30% ytd and, despite the reduced EBITDA, trade at only 5.7x P/E, 7.5x EV/EBITDA and 15.1% free cash flow yield for FY19e.

GVC Holdings

Parliamentary U-turn

Update | Technology | 15 Nov 2018

Following the resignation of Sports Minister Tracey Crouch, the UK government has bowed to pressure to bring forward the reduction in FOBT stake limits, from October 2019 to April 2019. The planned increase in remote gaming duty (from 15% to 21%) will also commence in April. We reduce our FY19 EBITDA by a further GBP 95m and net debt/EBITDA now peaks at 3.0x in FY19. Our FY20 estimates are broadly unchanged.