Growth online and the promise of an expanding US market fuelled consistent results for William Hill in its last trading statement released this week.
William Hill CEO Philip Bowcock disclosed in a statement that the company had enjoyed tremendous growth in the UK market, as well as generated substantial revenue from international interests. He clarified that the company was also able to deliver on key transformation projects to the delight of the management team.
Bowcock made it known that the company experienced significant development driven by its online and US investments.
“In the UK, an unprecedented run of bookmaker-friendly sporting results led to unusual wagering and gaming trends, which we expect to normalise over time,” he said.
“The sale of our Australian business has further strengthened our balance sheet.”
Bowcock stated that the company has the summer’s World Cup in view, while it is getting poised for the decision of the US Supreme Court on legalizing sports betting. The company is also awaiting “the outcome of the UK Triennial Review” for better positioning of its future businesses.
According to Bowcock, William Hill‘s online net revenue rose by 12% within the period under review.
“We saw very strong football and horseracing results in the early part of 2018, an average result from Cheltenham against a record festival in 2017, and a similar year-on-year result in the Grand National,” he revealed.
As a result of the football, horse racing and Cheltenham results in the Grand National, sportsbook net revenue rose by 17% with gross win margins rising to 8.8%. Based on this, the company management instituted some changes in international markets that resulted in betting revenues diving by 8% in the face of reduced recycling occasioned by higher margins.
Revenues made from gaming events shot up by 8%, with active customers and higher cross-rate rates helping to boost gaming revenues. To this end, total online actives hit 10%.
In view of approaching World Cup, Bowcock made it clear that William Hill has improved the navigation and loading speeds of its Sportsbook app. There are also substantial enhancements to the entire promotions and cross sell of the app. But that is not all.
“We have enriched our media offering with improvements to William Hill Radio and TV, including a betting TV archive, and invested in gaming campaigns during the period for Vegas and Casino,” the CEO said.
“In April, we completed the transition of teams from Tel Aviv to our other operations in Gibraltar, Krakow, Leeds and London, which is increasing efficiency and access to critical talent pools for digital marketing and technology.”
In the retail sector, William Hill’s net revenue dropped by 4%. The net revenue made from Sportsbook slid by 9%, horseracing wagers plummeted by 13%, even though the gross win margin rose by 0.8% to peak at 18.8%.
Within this period, the company added boxing, golf and rugby league to its offerings even with expansions on its SSBT products.
William Hill is investing in its US markets in readiness for the Supreme Court’s decision on legalizing sports betting. However, the disposal of William Hill Australia for an equity value of A$313.7m to CrownBet Holdings was completed on 23 April.
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