Betting Provider Entain Group Reports 2022 Revenue and Profit Growth
FTSE100 betting company Entain Group, which is the owner of some of the leading UK betting sites, has released its financial reports for 2022, recording a growth in both revenue and profit. The owner of betting sites Ladbrokes and Coral has had a very successful 2022 associated with expansion, development, and venture into new jurisdictions and markets. Surprisingly, however, the company’s online betting revenue and profit did not yield growth in line with other areas of the business.
Entain reported that its total revenue growth for 2022 was 12%, or £3.59bn, up from £3.17bn in 2021. This resulted in a gross profit growth of 11% – £2.25bn compared to £2bn the previous year. This is further evidence that the company’s strategy for product diversification and growth has been very successful. As a result of the growth, the company’s EBITDA has gone up by 13% to £993.2bn compared to £881.7bn in 2021.
The underperforming part of Entain’s 2022 financial report happens to be the one related to revenue and profit from betting sites. Entain reports that its revenue from online betting and gaming is down by 1%, however this makes sense when the underlying factors are considered. The drop in revenue and profit from betting sites is due to the company’s operations in the Netherlands and the UK. Entain did not have any active betting sites in the Netherlands until January 2023, when it re-entered the jurisdiction through the acquisition of BetCity. On the other hand, issues with UK betting and gaming regulations resulted in reduced revenue and profit for Entain’s popular UK betting sites. The company points out that, if the UK and Dutch betting markets were excluded from the report, the net gaming revenue from betting sites for 2022 would have been 3% more compared to 2021.
Discussing the financial report, Entain CEO Jette Nygaard-Anderson stated:
“We made excellent financial, operational and strategic progress during 2022, and took significant strides towards our goal of being the global leader in betting, gaming and interactive entertainment.”
The online betting numbers are not overly disappointing. While the gross gaming revenue from gaming is down by 1% to £1.57bn, the sports betting sites record no change to gross gaming revenue between 2021 and 2022 (£1.44bn) despite the various difficulties the company had to face. Entain’s total gross gaming revenue across all of its betting sites for FY2022 sits at £3bn. On the other hand, the betting provider’s retail betting locations continue to strive in their post-Covid recovery, with the company reporting a net gaming revenue of £1.3bn, up by 62% from 2021’s £791m. The main drivers behind this success include the full removal of any lockdown regulations, and the introductions of new betting terminals in retail locations, which the company states has improved customer experience.
Despite the numbers in the report, the betting sites operated by Entain continue to be amongst the favourites with UK bettors. The company reports 7% increase in active customer accounts. This growth has a lot to do with the company’s product diversification, as Entain is trying to target different groups of bettors in order to improve acquisition across its recreational customer base. In order to do this, the company employed five M&A transactions, one of which was the launch of a brand new unit by the name of Entain CEE which has the job of consolidating and developing the company’s presence in new CIS and Eastern European markets.
Speaking about profit, Entain reported that operating profits before tax came to £321m, which is a drop of 38% compared to 2021. The previous financial year saw operating profits of £527m, however the large drop of £193m is due to the operating losses sustained by BetMGM, the joint venture between Entain and MGM in the United States. Despite the losses, both companies are adamant that BetMGM will be highly profitable in the long term. According to the latest projections, BetMGM will record revenue of £1.5bn to £1.66bn for 2023. Meanwhile, BetMGM’s market share continues to grow, with the venture securing 29% of sports betting and 18% of iGaming activity in the US.
The UK struggles Entain encountered included the uncertainty associated with the upcoming White Paper on betting and gaming, and regulatory fine of record £17m that had to be paid by the company to the UK Gambling Commission. Despite this, the company is going strong, with an increase of 13% to the number of active players on its UK betting sites. Ladbrokes itself saw an increase of 75% to its recorded visits. The result of this was a net gaming revenue increase of 56% compared to 2021.
Entain and its stakeholders have hailed the financial report as a success and are confident in the company’s short- and long-term future. Despite regulatory changes across a number of European jurisdictions, Entain remains a leading provider of betting sites and retail betting in the UK and globally, and is planning further expansion and growth in 2023.