Sun International to Continue Growth, Boost SunSlots

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Sun International, the South African operator of about a dozen casino properties including Sun City, has released its full-year results for 2022. The company’s online gaming operation, SunBet is reporting record-high revenues, and land operations including its slot distributor, Sun Slots are also showing strong revenue growth.

In the year that ended December 31, Sun International enjoyed a 10-fold increase in adjusted top earnings from R110m ($5,999,081) to R1.1bn ($59,990,810). EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization) nearly doubled to R3.3bn.

Online Income up 36%

Anthony Leeming, Sun International Chief Executive said: “We are particularly pleased by the significant progress we are making with our online strategy, with SunBet showing strong growth in all key indicators. Gaming income from casinos, Sun Slots, and SunBet showed a significant recovery, with income up 36%.”

Sun Slots currently owns and operates six Limited Payout Machine (LPM) Route Operators across 4 provinces within South Africa – Grand Gaming Slots runs in Gauteng and Mpumalanga; Hot Slots in Gauteng, and Kingdomslots and KZN Slots KwaZulu-Natal, as well as Grandslots.

The company brought over 5,000 LPMs back into operation last year adding over 500 more machines than it had activated in 2021.

The CEO added that SunSlots intends to add another 1,000 machines to its network.

Leeming stated: “We continue to engage with the regulators to increase the rollout of LPMs to the 6,500 LPM positions that have been allocated,” according to various reports.

The wholly-owned subsidiary’s income increased about 20% over the previous year while its online operation, SunBet saw income surge more than 85% for the year with outsized growth in the second half of 2022.

Active players on our rapidly expanding online sports betting and gaming platform continued to grow, with additional games being offered and the overall player experience being enhanced,” a statement said.

While online gambling is understood by most to not be legal in South Africa, that is simply not the case. Online betting and games where players bet on outcomes, such as roulette, are allowed.

Successes of Sun City Operator Continue Upward Trajectory

On this day last year, SunBet reported 2021 turnover was up 78% over 2020 and 66% over 2019, while gaming income rose 33% against 2020 and 30% against 2019. Last year’s commentary on the numbers with explanations of the online sector of iGaming and sports betting showed healthy growth driven by increased broadband, smartphone, and mobile money penetration, with SunBet fervently scaling up revenues from middling to high-end customers.

The group expanded into new markets last year with a 70 percent investment of $3.2m (R58m) in SunBet Africa Holdings.

Leeming said: “The company has online sports betting and casino licenses to operate in Ghana, Zambia, and Kenya. We are in the early stages of rolling out the SunBet operating model and brand in these markets, which have attractive long-term growth potential.

“Our resort and hotel properties have continued to perform exceptionally well, and we anticipate another good year from them in 2023.”

Source: Sun International poised for more growth following post-pandemic rebound, G3 Newswire, March 14, 2023

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