Buzz Bingo

Buzz Bingo lauds omnichannel reset to return to growth

Buzz Bingo has hailed its ‘new dynamic multi-channel offering’ which has led to the return to growth of the heritage UK bingo group.

Publishing its FY2023 accounts for the year ending 13 January 2024, Buzz Bingo registered corporate revenues of £207m, up 6% on FY2022 results of £195m.

Accounts detailed: “FY 2023 was a year of reset for the group. Buzz set out its five-year business plan to deliver profitable growth and today’s results demonstrate successful delivery of that plan.”

A breakdown of revenues saw Buzz generate a retail income of £168m, up 5% on FY2022 comparatives of £165m, as online revenues grew by 31% to £39m (FY2022: £29m).

Buzz highlighted key omnichannel metrics as “44% of online revenue in FY 2023 was from customers who first played in the Group’s retail clubs, demonstrating the success of Buzz’s omnichannel strategy”.

Year trading saw Buzz welcome 200,000 new visitors to its 81 bingo clubs across the UK, of which “around half were under 35 years old”.

Activating a new omnichannel offering, Buzz engaged customers within higher quality clubs, with a focus on price point, attractive prize levels, and launching new live bingo concepts to merge experiences for retail and online audiences.

SBC News Buzz Bingo lauds omnichannel reset to return to growth
Dominic Mansour: Buzz Bingo

Group CEO, Dominic Mansour, commented: “We delivered a solid performance in 2023, with strong online growth ahead of the market, and underlying profitability up 14%. 2023 was a year in which we focused on resetting the business’s foundations and putting in place our omnichannel strategy to deliver sustainable growth.

“Our omnichannel strategy positions Buzz uniquely in the market. We have an extremely loyal, high-frequency retail customer base and much of our online growth owes to the successful implementation of our ability to convert retail players to play online. We remain confident in the future, capturing the opportunity that exists for Buzz, and ultimately delivering sustainable profitable growth.”

Commercial growth was supported by Buzz implementing a new cost control programme. Despite increased costs of sales to £70m, Buzz maintained group administrative costs at £120m for year trading (FY2022: £152m).

A leaner, Buzz declared an underlying EBITDA of £34.7m, up 14% on like-for-like 2022 comparatives of £30m. The group’s consolidated statement cited a return to profits of £14m, reversing FY2022 losses of £19m.

Despite achieving underlying profits, year accounts booked outstanding 2022 impairments charges of £19m, combined with exceptional items of £4.4m, as Buzz narrowed FY2023 losses to £30m below FY2022 losses of £53m.

A positive outlook for 2024 trading was provided as year-to-date, Buzz has achieved a significant 22% increase in Underlying EBITDA, with overall like-for-like revenues up 5% from the prior year. Retail and online revenues are on track for another record year, particularly with online revenues increasing by 24%.

2024 proceedings saw Buzz announce the acquisition of two of the UK’s largest bingo clubs from MERKUR, a deal expected to boost retail channel revenues by over 10% annually. Further initiatives saw management offshore Buzz’s online business to enhance commercial growth and financial efficiencies.

Buzz leadership concluded: “The group remains well-positioned to capture the anticipated growth in bingo as consumer confidence continues to grow, with players from younger demographics increasingly attracted to the experience bingo offers.”

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