Iplayco Corp (CVE:IPC), a Canadian maker of children's indoor play equipment, said sales jumped 48 percent in its fiscal first quarter from a year earlier, as margins increased and revenue from its manufacturing operations rose by more than half.
For the three months to December 31, 2014, the Langley, B.C.-based company, which reports in Canadian currency, posted sales of $4.3 million, up 47.9 percent from $2.9 million in the fiscal first quarter of 2014.
Net income soared to $220,309, or 1 cent per share, from $24,212, or flat per share, in the year earlier period.
Gross margin improved to 41.6 percent from 38 percent.
The company said sales from its manufacturing operations rose 54.4 percent, while sales from its own family entertainment centre in Langley decreased 2.3 percent in the latest period.
Looking ahead, Iplayco said it expects a moderate decline in sales and earnings in the current quarter ending March 31 as compared to the fiscal first quarter, due largely to the timing of orders from its largest customers.
The Canadian company, which ranked among the top 10 best performing companies in the diversified industries sector on the TSX Venture Exchange last year, has sold play structures to over 50 countries and to 16 different markets, including family entertainment centres, theme parks, shopping malls, restaurants, hospitals, zoos, churches and more. It also owns and operates a family entertainment centre, called The Great Escape, in Langley, BC.
In 2014, Iplayco closed on an $8.8 million investment by a Saudi investor, which also happens to be one of its biggest customers in Saudi Arabia, paving the way for a huge expansion of the company.
The investor, known as Saudi FAS Holding Company and its British Columbia subsidiary, FAS Entertainment B.C. --- together known as FAS -- now hold a stake of over 50 percent in Iplayco. FAS and its affiliates have bought a total of more than US$14 million of play structure equipment from the company over the past three years.
FAS, through Al Hokair and Arabian Centres, is planning to roll out hundreds of its Billy Beez family entertainment centres worldwide through a major expansion, and is intending to use Iplayco to do it. The closure of the financing solidifies plans to place several hundred millions in orders with Iplayco over the next five to seven years.