Aristocrat Digital Continues Aggressive Expansion

Aristocrat Digital has expanded with the acquisition of two more European studios and establishing another studio in Helsinki.

Aristocrat Digital continues expanding throughout Europe with renewed vigour. The Australian pokies giant purchased two European studios this week, Futureplay and PlaySoft. In addition to the purchases, Aristocrat Digital established another Helsinki-based studio, Northern Stars.

Michael Lang is the CEO of Aristocrat Digital. Unsurprisingly, Land is delighted with the company’s latest acquisitions.

“These deals are consistent with Aristocrat’s successful strategy of bringing more world-class game development talent and capability into the organisation to expand our game pipeline and sustain our strong growth momentum in digital.

“We are thrilled to welcome Futureplay, Northern Stars, and Playsoft to the Aristocrat Digital family, given their impressive track records in game development, creativity, and innovation. Coupled with Aristocrat Digital’s ambitious strategy, global scale, marketing and investment capabilities, we look forward to helping our new colleagues reach new heights as part of Aristocrat.

“We will continue to be active in pursuing global talent and studio deals that accelerate our growth strategy, alongside our sustained proven focus in driving organic growth and above-market results.”

Who Are The New Aristocrat Digital Studios?

Futureplay is based in Helsinki, Finland, and specialises in free-to-play mobile gaming. It has created six games since its launch in 2015, and more than 140 million users enjoy those titles. Merge Gardens, Idle Farming Empire, and Battlelands Royale are three of Futureplay’s most popular titles.

Playsoft hails from Gdansk, Poland, and is a social casino gaming specialist. This is a potentially highly profitable genre that Aristocrat Digital wants to expand into. Social casino games are free-to-play, but allow in-app purchases.

The studio has produced more than 50 hugely successful games during its 13-year history. It will operate within the Product Madness business of Aristocrat Digital.

The newly established Northern Stars studio boasts an impressive wealth of talent. The emerging hybrid casual genre is the studio’s primary focus. Industry giants Minwoo Lee, formerly of EA, Rovio, and Ubisoft, is part of the team. As is former Rovio star Antii Nikander.

Aristocrat’s Digital Arm Boost Company Balance Sheet

Aristocrat released its half-year financial figures for 2021 in late May. It is fair to say they were mostly disappointing, which was expected with the company operating amid a global pandemic.

Half-year profits after tax slumped 73.5 per cent compared to the same period in 2020. However, the company still enjoyed $346.5 million profit after tax; $1.305 billion was the comparative figure for 2020.

Aristocrat Digital was one of the few divisions that saw increased revenues. Revenue rose 28.8 per cent to $895.8 million, which helped the group report an overall drop in revenue of a mere one per cent. Aristocrat Digital spent $242.7 million on game development during H1 FY2021, the equivalent of 11 per cent of the company’s revenue!

Shares Trading At An All-Time High

Aristocrat’s management team run a tight ship that has weathered the COVID-19 storm exceptionally well. The company temporarily laid off 1,000 staff during the height of the pandemic because its physical pokies business ground to a halt. That side of the business is a licence to print money when you look at its potential earnings.

The Australian gambling firm, valued in the region of $28 billion, rents thousands of machines to casinos globally. Aristocrat has 50,554 pokies in the United States alone. $78.77 per machine per day is the average rent on those pokies. Mathematicians among you will have worked that out to $3,981,350.88 in rent every day!

Of course, this side of the business generated nowhere near those mind-boggling sums last year because American casinos, like their Australian counterparts, switched off while casinos remained closed. Casinos are open again, and money is pouring back in.

Shares in Aristocrat trade at an all-time high of $44.77 each. This represents a 42.63 per cent increase on the year to date. Furthermore, investors jumping in five years ago are enjoying a 189.77 per cent return on their investment.

The share price should continue soaring with Aristocrat Digital rapidly expanding.