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Gaming Guru

Howard Stutz

Shuffle Master's third-quarter earnings up 14 percent

10 September 2010

LAS VEGAS, Nevada -- The addition of table games to casinos in Delaware, Pennsylvania and the opening of gambling in Singapore, lifted Shuffle Master's third-quarter earnings.

The Las Vegas-based gambling equipment provider said Wednesday its net income was $5.8 million, or 11 cents per share, in the three-month period ended July 31, up from net earnings of $5.6 million, or 10 cents per share, a year earlier.

Revenue rose 14.2 percent to $51.5 million from $45.1 million.

Shuffle Master told investors the sales of automated card shufflers into Delaware and Pennsylvania, which added blackjack and poker tables during June and July, increased 15 percent in the quarter.

Shuffle Master said it now has 6,588 shufflers leased to casinos around the world, a 16 percent increase from a year ago. More shufflers were leased to casinos in Delaware, Pennsylvania and Singapore,

In a statement, Shuffle Master Chief Executive Officer Phillip Peckman said the company saw several of its electronic table games removed by casinos in Pennsylvania to make way for live gaming.

However, substantially more shufflers were placed to offset the loss of the electronic tables.

"Our strong quarter was the result of many factors," Peckman said.

Roth Capital Markets gaming analyst Todd Eilers told investors he expected Shuffle Master to benefit from the gaming expansion in Pennsylvania and Delaware. He suspected that New York's racetrack casinos could soon allow the use of products like Shuffle Master's electronic gaming tables.

"We remain bullish on shares of Shuffle Master as we look for the company to benefit from live table game expansions," Eilers said.

The company reported earnings after the close of trading on the Nasdaq National Market. Shares of Shuffle Master rose 35 cents, or 4.22 percent, to finish at $8.64.