Pollard Banknote fell just short of a landmark $500m in revenue, but it still managed to set a turnover record in 2021, a year that Co-CEO John Pollard labelled as ‘very successful’.
Publishing its fourth quarter and full-year accounts for FY2021, Pollard Banknote declared that instant ticket sale growth helped Q4 revenues increase 12% year-on-year up to a record $116.5m.
Buoyed by ‘key contract awards’ and ‘strong’ charitable gaming performance, the firm posted full-year revenues of $459m, up 18% YoY and breaking its previous record. Taking into consideration combined sales via its NeoPollard joint venture with Neogames, revenues for FY2021 stood at $499m, up 17% and just shy of the half-billion mark.
Retail sales of instant tickets maintained ‘mid to high single digit’ growth following 2020’s 20-30% growth, whilst ilottery products also maintain strong levels of growth as innovation leads the way in the lottery industry.
However, Pollard Banknote noted that instant ticket sales had ‘fallen short of expectations’ due to ‘inefficiencies in manufacturing and ‘stresses placed on the supply chain’.
Furthermore, net income for the year decreased by 59% to $19.7m compared to $33.3m in 2020, attributed to ‘non-operational items’ including successes surrounding its Compliant Gaming LLC purchase.
Despite this, Pollard Banknote’s adjusted EBITDA achieved a new record, rising 4.2% YoY up to $84m, thanks to ‘very strong profitability’ within its product mix.
Co-CEO John Pollard commented: “2021 was a very successful year for Pollard Banknote on a number of critical fronts and in light of the extreme challenges over the last two years with COVID-19, we could not be prouder of our employees. We remained singularly focused on the health and safety of our workplaces and team members through 2021.”
“Our financial results reflect the achievements of 2021, with record sales, by a dramatic margin, and adjusted EBITDA reaching new heights. It is a strong measure of how we continue to help our lottery and charitable gaming partners grow and generate money for good causes.
“Our adjusted EBITDA reached a record level at $84m, with a number of individual business operations reaching record levels. Our focus on lottery and charitable gaming is the cornerstone of our success.
“Pollard generated very strong cash flow again this year, a hallmark of the strength of our business model. Pollard has now generated over $110m from operating activities over the past two years, allowing us to complete a number of acquisitions and investments while maintaining a very low debt leverage capital structure, providing us with significant available resources going forward.”
Operationally, the firm completed the acquisition of Next Generation Lotteries AS last January, increasing its position within the ilottery space. This was only amplified by the 72% sales growth in NeoPollard’s ilottery contracts and the firm noted that it expects further growth in the ilottery space in the next few years, despite increased competition from the rise of igaming.
Likewise, the acquisition of Compliant Gaming highlights the firm’s intent when it comes to the online gaming and lottery space, with the purchase showing ‘phenomenal success’ in its first year.
Doug Pollard, Co-CEO of Pollard Banknote, added: “The ilottery market continues to be a very exciting opportunity for both Pollard and the lottery world. The results of the Michigan ilottery contract have stabilized in the last few quarters despite a number of headwinds, including increased igaming competition from the casino sector and coming off of earlier peak sales during very strong jackpot runs in late 2020 and early 2021.
“Although no new ilottery opportunities were opened in the US in 2021, we remain highly engaged with lotteries throughout the US with a number of near term opportunities and we are confident that lotteries will continue to expand into ilottery, both in the US as well as other non-US lotteries.”