Catena Media Wraps up Share Buyback, Nets 2.3 Million Shares

Catena Media, the media company that built an empire focusing on the gaming industry, now has more shares in its possession. It has wrapped up a share buyback program it began in September, adding 2.3 million to its collection.

Catena, which has become a primary lead generating company for the online gaming space, announced the buyback this past July. It then launched the activity on September 13. The idea was to gather up company shares in order to, subsequently, “promote a more efficient capital usage.” Catena’s board had initially approved the buyback of as many as seven million ordinary shares.

 

From the start of the exercise until November 17, Catena purchased 1.6 million shares. It then added another 817,700 to the pile from November 17 to December 3, according to an update from today. The total holdings equal 3.1% of the company’s total shares, with Catena now holding a combined 2,322,510 million.

 

More buybacks could come, but only if Catena gets some additional “distributable profits.” Its board of directors will make the final decision on any future buybacks.

 

The total value of the buyback was SEK132.5 million (US$14.57 million).

 

New Shares to Be Issued in the Future

As it stands now, there are 75,570,137 issued Catena shares. This is going to expand to 76,180,121 after new shares are issued. That exercise is expected to take place in conjunction with the warrant exercise period announced after Catena issued its Q3 interim report at the end of last month.

 

In accordance with the guidelines established for the buyback program, Catena cannot hold more than 10% of the total issued share capital. It is only able to repurchase shares until its annual general meeting, scheduled for May 23 of next year.

 

Catena’s stock has seen a little volatility over the past week. On the afternoon of December 1, it was trading at SEK51.66 (US$5.68) before dipping to SEK50.48 (US$5.55) a day later. It rose the morning of December 3, reaching SEK51.70 (US$5.69), only to fall to SEK47.94 (US$5.27) as of 12:30 PM CET today. Its most recent price was SEK49.20 (US$5.41).

 

Catena Continues Growth

Catena has had a decent year, primarily supported by expansion into the North American market. The Q3 interim report reflected operating revenue of €33 million ($37.22 million). This represented a 33% increase over the results from last year.

 

Seeing the returns from the North American market, Catena will continue to focus a lot of its efforts in the region. Expanding into all facets of online gaming, including sports betting, will give it additional support. The company has rapidly bought into the young iGaming market in the US, purchasing over 100 websites and domains this year. Among these are i15 Media LLC, gamblingonline.com, Michigansharp.com, NYSportsDay.com and more.

 

Some of those purchases, such as that of i15 Media, carried hefty price tags. Catena agreed to pay $45 million for i15 Media, turning over $12.5 million in cash at closing. $20 million will be paid in three installments over the next year. The remainder will be covered through the issuance of 2,207,357 Catena shares.