William Hill praises online growth as revenue climbs

20 November 2017

William Hill has cited growth within its online business as the key reason behind a jump in revenue in the 17 weeks to October 24.

Group revenue in the period increased 4% on a year-on-year basis, with online revenue up 6% and retail also climbing 3%.

William Hill also noted growth within its US division, with revenue up 28% year-on-year, although revenue in Australia was down 2% in the period.

Customers wagered 13% more via William Hill’s various online channels than in the same period last year, while the amount wagered in the US was also up 33%, but retail and Australia saw declines of 1% and 5%, respectively.

For the year-to-date, through to October 24, group revenue increased 3% year-on-year.

Online revenue for the period climbed 5%, while amounts wagered through this part of the William Hill business also increased 12%.

Retail remained relatively level in terms of both revenue and amount wagered by customers.

In addition, William Hill noted growth across its US and Australia businesses, with both revenue and amounts wagered in the US up 31% year-on-year, while in Australia, revenue increased 11% and amounts wagered 26%.

William Hill said that its performance in both periods remain in line with market expectations, assuming normalised margins, adding that it remains on track to deliver £40m (€45.1m/$52.9m) of annualised cost efficiencies by end of 2017, for reinvestment purposes.

Philip Bowcock, chief executive of William Hill, said: “We have delivered good financial and operational progress so far in the second half.

“Our online business has performed particularly well, with UK wagering 14% ahead of last year, in spite of the absence of a major football tournament, and an acceleration in gaming growth.

“Retail has benefited from a stronger gross win margin to deliver both sportsbook and gaming net revenue growth.

“Internationally, our US business continues to deliver strong double-digit net revenue growth and Australia's gross win margin has normalised relative to H1.

“We continue to make good progress on our transformation programme, which is on track to deliver £40m of annualised savings by the end of this year.

“This is supporting reinvestment in our business, including marketing increases in this second half to promote online's reinvigorated product and customer experience.”

Bowcock also noted that the bookmaker will continue to monitor the situation in the US regarding the potential wider legalisation of sports betting.

He said: “As the largest operator of sports books in Nevada and with our 80-plus year heritage in the UK, we are actively engaged in helping sports bodies, regulators and other interested parties to understand the benefits of having a licensed and well-regulated US betting industry.”

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