Positive opening momentum sees William Hill look forward to Russia 2018

Philip Bowcock – William Hill

FTSE bookmaker William Hill Plc has detailed a positive opening to its 2018 trading, as the firm continues its digital recovery, while restructuring its operations.

Issuing an unaudited trading statement for the 17-week period to 24 April 2018, William Hill details +3% gain in group revenues, driven by strong ‘Online and US performances’ which offset UK Retail declines.

The bookmaker reports a 12% uplift in period digital revenues, detailing that it maintained favourable sportsbook results during the start of 2018.

Online Sportsbook growth was further supported by an 8% revenue gain for William Hill Gaming, with the operator reporting improved cross-sell rates between its digital verticals.

Stateside, the FTSE betting group would highlight a significant +45% period net revenue growth of its Las Vegas betting assets, recording a period of high customer activity combined with favourable results.

As anticipated William Hill would repeat industry-wide trends for its retail trading performance, recording a 4% decline in retail net betting extreme weather conditions significantly impacted shops and horseracing fixtures during the Q1 trading period.

Updating investors, Philip Bowcock, William Hill Group Chief Executive, commented on early 2018 trading:

“William Hill has had a positive start to 2018, making further progress against our strategic priorities to grow UK market share, drive international revenues and deliver key transformation projects.

“Continued momentum in Online and strong growth in the US have driven a good performance during the period. In the UK, an unprecedented run of bookmaker-friendly sporting results led to unusual wagering and gaming trends, which we expect to normalise over time. The sale of our Australia business has further strengthened our balance sheet.

“While we await the outcome of the UK Triennial Review and the Supreme Court’s decision on US sports betting legislation, we remain focused on continuing to deliver a great customer experience, particularly ahead of this summer’s World Cup.”

Closing its period trading activity, William Hill governance disposed of its Australian business division for €185 million to new Stars Group Inc subsidiary CrownBet Ltd.

The bookmaker now looks forward to a crucial World Cup Russia 2018 summer trading period, in which William Hill has detailed that it will deliver a number of product enhancements, with its group operations supported by heightened marketing activity.

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