Marketing focus drives revenue and earnings for bet-at-home

5 November 2019

Betclic Everest Group’s bet-at-home subsidiary has put a year-on-year increase in both revenue and earnings during the first three quarters of the year down to focused marketing efforts in core European markets.

Gross betting and gaming revenue for the nine months through to 30 September amounted to €106.8m (£92.2m/$118.8m), which represents an increase of 2.5% on €104.2m at the same point last year.

Online gaming – consisting of casino, games, poker and virtual sports – was the main source of income for bet-at-home, with revenue for this section of the business amounting to €63.2m. Online sports betting revenue stood at €43.6m for the period.

Players wagered a total of €2.44bn during the three quarters, up from €2.31bn last year. The vast majority of this was spent on online gaming (€2.05bn), with customers wagering a total of €391.0m on online sports betting.

bet-at-home noted a slight increase in betting fees and gambling levies, up 1.3% to €15.4m, but VAT on electronic services was down 40.6% to €3.5m. As a result, net betting and gaming revenue was up 5.7% year-on-year to €87.9m.

Marketing costs were almost identical year-on-year at €29.3m, but bet-at-home noted that this was despite the lack of a major international sporting event this year. Last year’s reporting period included the 2018 Fifa World Cup football tournament.

Such marketing efforts helped bet-at-home boost its overall registered customer base from 5.0m at the end of September 2018 to 5.2m this year.

As marketing costs were level, and bet-at-home was helped by lower electronic VAT, only slightly higher fees and levies, and improved revenue, the operator was able to record higher earnings for the period.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) climbed 12.8% year-on-year to €27.0m. Earnings before interest and tax were also up from €22.9m to €25.6m, while earnings before tax increased from €23.0m to €25.6m.

However, consolidated profit for the period tumbled from €14.4m to €5.8m due to corporation tax payments for between 2013 and 2018. These payments were the result of tax assessment by the Austrian Ministry of Finance, relating to the activities of its Linz-based subsidiary.

In September, bet-at-home said it expected to receive an €11.9m bill from the Austrian tax authorities as a result of the investigation.

Speaking in a joint statement, bet-at-home’s chief executives Franz Ömer and Michael Quatember said: “With the start of the European football leagues 2019-20, the AG Group again set a marketing focus in August 2019 in the context of international advertising campaigns to further strengthen brand awareness in the European core markets.

“With exactly the same marketing investments as in the same period of the previous year, EBITDA increased by 12.8% to €27.0m in the first three quarters of the 2019 financial year.”

The company also noted that it still expects to achieve gross betting and gaming revenue of between €130m and €143m for the full year, as well as EBITDA of between €29m and €33m.