PointsBet welcomes Australian sports' return

27 May 2020

Sports betting operator PointsBet has hailed news that Australia's National Rugby League and Australian Football League will return in May and June respectively, saying it would aid a business that has performed strongly despite the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

The NRL is to restart tomorrow (28 May), with the AFL to follow on 11 June, both before the end of the fourth quarter of the operator's fiscal year on 30 June. For that period to date, from 1 April to 25 May, PointsBet revealed that net win from Australian and US operations amounted to AUD$18.5m (£10.0m/€11.2m/US$12.3m), just below the $18.7m reported for the full three months of its third quarter this year.

Revenue in Australia amounted to $18.2m, while its US revenue for the period ended 25 May stands at $300,000. For the year to date, net revenue amounts to $67.2m.

PointsBet said the continued strong performance of its Australian business was aided by more players shifting to online betting during the period of closure for retail outlets due to the Covid-19 crisis.

Racing turnover growth in Australia outperformed other wagering service providers - at a time when racing in the country was largely unaffected by the pandemic - while an improvement in its overall product offering led to a greater share of wallet from existing clients. 

This, it said, would be aided further by the return of the NRL and ARL.

“The recommencement of NRL and AFL will see the breadth of PointsBet’s product offering expand in Australia, with clients being able to wager on both racing and major sports,” the operator said.

It will also serve as the exclusive wagering partner for the Fox Sports AFL channel, known locally as Fox Footy, for the 2020 season, giving it a bigger presence around the sport.

However, PointsBet admitted that the situation in the US is less clear, with no decisions made as to when the country’s major leagues will restart following pandemic-enforced shutdowns.

The National Basketball Association and Major League Baseball have stated that they hope to return in July, while golf’s PGA Tour is to restart on 11 June.

However, PointsBet noted that an expanded wagering product had helped keep US customers engaged during the shut-down, supported by its free-to-play offering.