For a second consecutive quarter European operator Unibet Plc has been hit negatively by exchange rate fluctuations which have impacted corporate performance. Unibet recorded gross win revenues of £76.1 million down 0.5% on Q1 2014 £76.5 million.
Highlighting its currency fluctuations impact, Unibet management stated that had the operator reported its performance in SEK gross win revenue for the quarter would have amounted to SEK 960.1 million, a growth of more than 17% on Q1 2014 SEK 818 million.
The operator saw a tough opening quarter to 2015, recording several top-line metric declines in performance. EBITDA earnings fell to £14.4 million down from Q1 2014 £21 million. Unibet operations would post profits after tax of £10 million (Q1 2014: £15.3 million).
Unibet governance stated that Q1 2015 has been an adjustment period for its operations that had undertaken increased marketing and operational costs which had contributed to a lower product margins. Governance stated that the operator would reap the benefits of its increase spend once customer activity follows through to gross win revenues.
At product level, Unibet noted that it had recorded active players up 10% to plus + 600,000 (Q1 2014: 550,000), and that its system had recorded an all-time high in customer deposits. Unibet governance was pleased to note that the operator had maintained its 2014 positive momentum in sports betting with betting turnover up 17% during the period.
Unibet CEO Henrik Tjärnström commented on Q1 2015 performance
“During the first quarter Unibet has continued to focus on marketing to build on the success achieved in 2014. This has been reflected in all-time highs in customer deposits (up 12% in GBP and 25% in constant currency), sports betting turnover (up 17% in GBP and 30% in constant currency) and also active customers reached a new ATH and even surpassed the impressive activity levels achieved during last year’s World Cup in Football. As we know, it takes some time for increased customer activity to flow through into gross winnings revenue, so the higher marketing investment and lower margins in the quarter had a short-term impact on the reported result.”
“Unibet’s organic growth continued to develop strongly in the first quarter, with an increase of gross winnings revenue in constant currency of more than 15%, against strong comparatives. This is again significantly higher growth than the overall market and indicates that we are continuing to take market shares across the board.”
Unibet Q1 2015 Performance Overview