William Hill reports a falling Operating profit in a ‘challenging year’

The last year has been a kind of flip flop for sports betting operators across UK while some made good improvement on YOY basis, there are also few who could not impress anyone despite having plenty of investments across marketing, new offers, and new gaming options.

William Hill is one such operator who has rather called the last year ‘challenging year’ in which they failed to use all their weapons for attaining a good financial result. It has precisely reported a 10% fall in its annual operating profit and blamed challenging trading conditions and unfavorable football results for the same. The profit for the 12 months through to December 27 is dropped to £261.5m (€310m/$328m) from £291m, and similarly earnings per share also fell by 13% YOY. Although, there is a small respite with revenue which has increased slightly to nearly £1.6bn despite a 3% fall in online business revenues.

William Hill has also reported that there are “positive trends” post December in all four of the company’s divisions in the seven weeks through to mid-February, including encouraging improvement in online, with UK sportsbook wagering up 10% and UK gaming net revenue up 8% which is a good sign for current year’s financial results. Talking about it, Interim chief executive Philip Bowcock said, “We have delivered extensive product, user experience and marketing improvements in online, modernised our retail management structure to focus more on the customer and continued to grow in our key international markets. There are now encouraging signs in all our divisions, in particular online’s UK business, which is now delivering sustained growth.

“Looking forward, we want to keep improving the customer experience. This means making it both fast and easy, as well as enjoyable and personal, to bet with William Hill. To do this, we are expanding our product range, increasing our marketing investment and deploying our technology assets and expertise in key areas. At the same time, we expect our transformation programme to continue delivering important efficiency savings that we can reinvest to deliver an even better customer experience and faster growth.

“We have a clear strategy to take the business forward and grow market share in the UK, while expanding our revenues internationally.”

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