Paddy Power Betfair reveals revenue, profit drop in Q1
Paddy Power Betfair has said it is making progress against “strategic priorities”, despite reporting a year-on-year drop in revenue and operating profit in the first quarter.
Revenue in the three months to March 31 came in at £408m (€464m/$556.8m), down 2% on £416m in the same period last year.
Underlying earnings before interest, tax, deprecation and amortisation (EBITDA) dropped 8% from £111m to £102m, with a lower margin of 24.9%.
Paddy Power Betfair also revealed that underlying operating profit decreased by 12% from £91m to £80m
However, chief executive Peter Jackson was upbeat about the performance in the first quarter, saying the company had made progress with certain targets.
“We have made good progress against our strategic priorities; in Europe, the successful completion of our platform integration has resulted in a meaningful improvement to the Paddy Power product,” Jackson said.
“This has seen the brand’s gaming revenue returning to growth from February and a significant uplift in Cash Out usage and in-running betting during the Cheltenham Festival.
“In Australia, Sportsbet continues to perform well and is targeting further market share growth, with additional investment planned to take advantage of any disruption arising from market consolidation and the introduction of increased taxes.
“In the USA, TVG and Betfaircasino.com have good momentum and we are continuing to make preparations for any positive regulatory changes.
“Notwithstanding lower profits in the first quarter, we expect full year underlying EBITDA of between £470m and £495m.”
Jackson also spoke about a return of funds to company shareholders: “We are today (Wednesday) announcing that we intend to return £500m of cash to shareholders, representing a step towards a more efficient capital structure, whilst retaining substantial strategic flexibility.”
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