Presenting Betsson AB’s Q4 2017 quarterly update, Group Chief Executive Pontus Lindwall is upbeat with regards to his firm’s 2018 outlook, despite recent setbacks.
Lindwall the former Betsson AB Group Chairman, who last September retook leadership of the Stockholm-listed enterprise, following the departure of Ulrik Bengtsson as CEO, outlines the group’s ‘restructuring plan’.
Closing a turbulent 2017, in which Betsson has faced increased operational costs and higher betting duties, combined with the impacts of tougher market regulations and negative currency fluctuations, Lindwall and Betsson’s executive team are fully aware of 2018’s challenge.
In his presentation, Lindwall hits back at the highly publicised news of Betsson’s ‘cost saving’ restructure, which has seen the company reduce its global headcount by 160 staff members.
“This is not a cost-saving program. Instead, we are looking to restructure group efficiencies. This requires less corporate layers and clearer responsibilities within the organisation” states Lindwall to investors.
Detailing immediate initiatives, Lindwall states that Betsson will scale back its UK facing operations for the short-term. Lindwall states that this action is not a retreat from the saturated UK betting market. Instead, Betsson will take a ‘back-to-basics’ approach to its underlining UK strategy.
Moving forward, Betsson will continue to focus on its product verticals, with the multi-market operator launching new casino and sportsbook enhancements in 2018.
As an industry leader, Lindwall emphasises the importance of social responsibility and customer care as more markets’ become regulated. This factor sees Lindwall look forward to Betsson’s home market of Sweden becoming a regulated online gambling market in 2019, in which Betsson will have a strategic advantage over numerous competitors.
Despite presenting a glum 2017 report, Lindwall outlines that Betsson underlying corporate KPIs throughout the group’s brands remains amongst the strongest in the industry.
Finally, having further strengthened its sportsbook foundations in 2017, which reported a strong Q4 2017 revenue and earnings performance, Betsson seeks to reap the rewards for Russia 2018 trading.