Unibet Board of Directors has decided to pay out a cash dividend of GBP 0.425 per share/SDR to be paid to holders of ordinary shares and SDRs. This amounts to a total of GBP 11.75 million which together with the share buy back in August 2011 is approximately 50 per cent of Unibet’s free cash flow for 2010.
In addition the Board of Directors has revised the dividend policy.
Earlier in the year the Board of Directors proposed to the AGM not to pay a dividend for the financial year 2010 to give the Board flexibility to consider strategic opportunities including acquisitions. The Board also said that the cash reserve may be distributed at a later stage should the opportunities not materialise.
During 2011, Unibet has evaluated several opportunities including acquisitions but now decided that the cash reserve being built up combined with the Group’s strong profitability and cash flow gives the Board a possibility to pay out a dividend of GBP 0.425 per share/SDR which is approximately SEK 4.48 with the exchange rate 10.55 GBP/SEK at 1 November 2011 per ordinary share. This will be paid to owners of shares/SDRs, on the register on the Euroclear Sweden AB record date of 7 November 2011. The dividend is expected to be distributed by Euroclear Sweden AB on payment date 10 November 2011. Unibet continues to evaluate a number of opportunities in different markets.
Combined with the share buy backs of GBP 4.64 million executed in the third quarter, the dividend of GBP 11.75 million will make the total distribution to shareholders GBP 16.39 million, which is approximately 50 per cent of Unibet’s free cash flow for 2010. Unibet expects to pay the annual dividend for 2011 in May 2012 subject to shareholder approval at the 2012 AGM.
No dividend will be paid on the shares/SDRs held by the company as a result of the share buy back programme.
In order to make the dividend policy more transparent and clear for share owners, the Unibet Board of Directors has adopted a revised dividend policy which is linked to cash flow generated by the business instead of net income as this is more closely aligned to the investment cycle of the business.
Unibet’s former dividend policy was to pay a dividend of up to 75 per cent of the Group’s net income after tax to the shareholders, provided that other financial objectives were met and an appropriate capital structure was maintained.
The Unibet Board of Directors revised dividend policy is to pay a dividend and/or share buy backs of up to 50 per cent of the Group’s free cash flow (being cash flow from operations, adjusted for movements in working capital, capital investments and tax payments).
In addition to the above dividend, which would normally be expected to be in the form of annual cash dividends, the Board can also decide to distribute one-off dividends or execute share buy backs where management and the Board consider that the company has generated surplus cash that it does not require either to fund its normal operations, acquisitions or other corporate development projects.
When considering both regular and one-off distributions the Board will take into account the overall requirement to ensure that an appropriate capital structure is maintained.
For more information:
Inga Lundberg, Investor Relations +44 788 799 6116
Unibet was founded in 1997 and is an online gambling company listed on NASDAQ OMXNordic Exchange in Stockholm. Unibet is one of the largest privately owned gambling operators in the European market and provides services in 27 languages through www.unibet.com
Today, Unibet has more than 5.5 million customers in over 100 countries. Unibet is a member of the EGBA, European Gaming and Betting Association, RGA, Remote Gambling Association in theUKand is audited and certified by eCOGRA in relation to responsible and fair gaming.
More information about Unibet Group plc can be found on www.unibetgroupplc.com