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Owner of PokerStars reports dramatic jump in Q2 profit raises adjusted earnings

TORONTO — The owner of PokerStars and other online gaming businesses is reporting a dramatic increase in profit for the second quarter and improved expectations for 2017 adjusted earnings as its evolution gains momentum.The former Amaya Inc., now called the Stars Group Inc. (TSX:TSGI), says it had US$70.5 million of net income during the quarter and US$114 million of adjusted earnings.The net income was equal to 35 U.S. cents per share — about three times higher than last year’s second quarter — and adjusted earnings were up 22 per cent at 56 U.S. cents per share.Revenue was up 6.8 per cent at US$305.3 million.The company also announced that it estimates 2017 revenue, reported in U.S. currency, will be at the upper end of its previous range of between $1.2 billion and $1.26 billion.It also has revised 2017 estimated adjusted earnings range upward to between $413 million and $437 million, from $400 million to $430 million.“Our evolution and transformation into The Stars Group continued as we completed our name change and head office move, while our second quarter saw the strengthening of our core senior management team and continued solid revenue growth led by our real money online casino offering,” CEO Rafi Ashkenazi said in a statement.“We plan to use this momentum to continue improving and strengthening our business and pursuing our strategic objectives.”Last year saw the departure of Amaya’s founder and largest shareholder, David Baazov, who mounted an unsuccessful attempt to take the company private. Baazov was replaced permanently last August by Ashkenazi, who had been interim CEO since March 2016. read more