Ardent leisure profits up; Viber Media acquired: Midday roundup

Ardent Leisure Group has reported a 14.1% boost in revenue to $250.6 million for the first half of the 2013-14 financial year, with core earnings of $33.5 million, up 13.4% on prior period.

Its Main Event division total revenue was up 25.8% to $US40.3 million. It had an EBITDA growth of $US8.3 million, up 32.3% on the prior period.

The group’s Goodlife Health Club revenue was up 27.4% to $80.0 million, with EBITDA up 19.3% to $16.3 million.

Ardent Leisure Group chairman Neil Balnaves AO said the group has continued to diversify and reweight its earnings to the high-growth Main Event and Health Club divisions.

“In addition, both Bowling and Theme Park divisions have recorded positive growth, through a focus on providing quality leisure and entertainment experiences at affordable prices,” he said.

Viber Media acquired

Viber Media has been acquired by Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten Inc. for $US900 million, BusinessSpectator reports.

The move by Rakuten Inc. will see it more than double the group’s number of users across its digital operations. Cyprus-based Viber reportedly has 300 million users.

It is one of the most popular smartphone calling and messaging apps.

Shares up on open

Aussie shares have opened higher this morning, as Wall Street ended the week strongly on Friday.

The S&P/ASX200 benchmark was up 25.7 points to 5382 at 12:25pm AEDT. On Friday the Dow Jones closed 126.80 points higher, up 0.79% to 16,154.39.

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