31 January 2018
Catalyst Media Group plc
("CMG" or the "Company")
Update regarding SIS
The Company is pleased to provide the following update in respect of Sports Information Services (Holdings) Limited ("SIS") in which CMG has an approximate 20.54% interest.
SIS and Racecourse Media Group ("RMG") have agreed to extend their existing LBO (licenced betting offices) partnership, which covers the distribution of RMG's media rights to LBOs across Great Britain and Ireland from 1 April 2018 for a period of five years, to now encompass the marketing of their rights internationally from 1 January 2019 to 31 March 2023 (the "New Agreement"). Under the New Agreement, which includes a profit share:
· SIS will control the fixed odds betting services for RMG and SIS content (SIS's content includes horseracing rights to all Irish racecourses, Chelmsford City Racecourse as well as various greyhound tracks, virtual racing and other international content); and
· RMG will control the international pool betting services globally for RMG and SIS's horseracing content.
The New Agreement, which now covers international markets in both retail and online channels, will help support SIS's strategic drive to promote short form betting content internationally and, in part, replaces the current arrangement for the overseas retail distribution of Great British and Irish racing media rights through GBI Racing to which SIS provides both services and content and which ends on 31 December 2018.
As set out in CMG's final results for the year ended 30 June 2016, announced on 12 December 2017, whilst SIS's management continue to see a prosperous future for SIS LIVE within the SIS Group, they recognised there may be a strategic benefit for SIS LIVE in alternative ownership. Following the receipt of various expressions of interest in SIS LIVE, CMG has been advised by SIS that it is undertaking a strategic review which could result in the disposal of SIS LIVE.
There is no certainty that such discussions will result in the disposal of SIS LIVE or the quantum of any consideration to be received should SIS LIVE be sold. CMG has been advised that the SIS Board has though agreed that should there be any realisation of value from the disposal of SIS LIVE, it will be distributed to SIS's shareholders in the form of a special dividend.
SIS Trading and Future Dividends
The Company has been advised by SIS that its trading is in line with SIS's management expectations and that SIS is expected to achieve an operating profit, before non-trading costs, for the full year to 31 March 2018 of approximately £10.0 million. One-off costs associated with non-trading activities, including costs associated with litigation and SIS's defined benefit pension scheme, will though impact profit before tax for the full year to 31 March 2018 by approximately £4.0 million.
SIS paid a dividend of £15.0 million in October 2017 and the SIS Board expects to announce a further dividend, the quantum of which has not yet been determined, after the end of its current financial year.
The Company will make further announcements as appropriate.
Catalyst Media Group Plc
Michael Rosenberg, Non-executive Chairman 07785 727 595
Melvin Lawson, Non-executive Director 020 7734 8111
Strand Hanson Limited 020 7409 3494
The information contained within this announcement is deemed by the Company to constitute inside information as stipulated under the Market Abuse Regulations (EU) No. 596/2014.