IGT earnings dip 29.5 percent in 4th quarter

Las Vegas-based IGT, the leading manufacturer of slot machines and casino game management systems, reported its fourth-quarter earnings Thursday.

Company: IGT (NYSE: IGT)

Revenue: $632.3 million (flat against the fourth quarter of 2012). Social gaming revenue climbed 72 percent to $61 million and the company shipped 11,500 replacement slot machines, up 35 percent over last year’s fourth quarter.

Earnings: $63.5 million (down 29.5 percent from the fourth quarter of 2012). The company announced plans to repurchase $200 million in shares.

Earnings per share: 80 cents (down 27.2 percent from the fourth quarter of 2012).

What it means: IGT closed its fiscal year with flat revenue and lower earnings, but for the entire year, revenue was up 8.9 percent to $2.34 billion and earnings were up 17.2 percent to $272.7 million.

The company’s gaming operations segment was down for the quarter while product sales were flat.

Revenue declined 6 percent to $247 million in the fourth quarter, primarily due to lower North America MegaJackpots play. IGT reported a declining base of MegaJackpots machines since the fourth quarter of 2012.

For the year, product sales were up slightly, due primarily to the sale of video lottery terminal sales in Canada.

The company’s debt increased when it issued $500 million in 5.35 percent bonds due in 2023 for general corporate purposes.

“We continue to drive significant revenue and earnings per share growth through the successful execution of our strategy and disciplined approach to capital allocation,” said CEO Patti Hart. “Our goal, as always, is to maximize our returns to shareholders through targeted share repurchases, consistent dividends and robust earnings growth.”