SBC News FOBTs tax credit sees Betfred rideout 2020 retail storms 

FOBTs tax credit sees Betfred rideout 2020 retail storms 

Betfred Limited has filed its 2020 corporate accounts (period reported up to 27 September), disclosing the impact of last year’s COVID-19 pandemic on its business units. 

The Done family-owned betting group saw its group wagers shrink from £10-to-£6.5 billion,  a result of the enforced closure of its UK betting estates and further COVID-19 adjustments.  

Trading with an impaired retail unit, Betfred recorded declines across all top-line metrics as corporate revenues fell to £524 million, down 16% on FY2019’s £621 million.

Nevertheless, registering an ‘exceptional credit return’ of £99 million, Betfred would declare group operating profits (income from profits and investments) of £104 million, up 40% on 2019’s £75 million.

The £99 million credit return was attributed to Betfred winning its long-standing HMRC tax dispute on miscalculated FOBTs tax charges taken between 2005-to-2013.

Providing a breakdown of operating expenses, Betfred maintained its like-for-like betting duties at £55 million, whilst the group saw its gaming machine duties fall to £38 million (FY2019: £64m).

Betfred cited that excluding its HMRC credit return, the company would have reported a full-year 2020 EBITDA of £35 million, down 27% on 2019 results of £48.5 million.

The 2020 accounts saw Betfred report that it had reduced its group headcount to 6900 from 7,150, with the bookmaker forced to review all non-profitable units.

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