bet-at-home earnings soar in H1
Betclic Everest Group’s central Europe-facing subsidiary bet-at-home has reported a year-on-year increase in net gaming revenue for the first half of 2019, with reduced marketing expenses boosting pre-tax earnings for the period.
Gross betting and gaming revenue for the six months to 30 June, 2019 amounted to €71.1m (£64.1m/$79.1m), a 6.7% improvement on the prior year’s total, with amounts wagered climbing 5.6% to €1.59bn.
While betting fees and gaming levies grew to €10.2m for the period, the value added tax (VAT) on electronic services declined to €2.2m, from €4.5m in H1 2018. This, the operator noted, led to faster than expected growth in net betting and gaming revenue, which was up 12.4% year-on-year at €58.7m.
Due to the lack of a major sporting event in 2019, marketing expenses over the six months fell 21.2% to €16.7m. However, the operator remains committed to increasing brand awareness through international advertising campaigns across TV, print and online, supported by sponsorship deals and bonus promotions.
As of 30 June, the operator had more than 5.1m registered customers, up marginally from 5.0m in the prior year.
The decline in expenses and increase in revenue saw the operator’s earnings for the period soar. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) almost doubled, growing 95.4% year-on-year to €21.3m.
Earnings before tax (EBT) amounted to €20.4m, an increase of 98.1% from H1 2018. The operator did not release comprehensive earnings figures, however.
Looking ahead, bet-at-home’s management board is projecting full-year revenue of between €130m and €143m in 2019, assuming there are no changes to the tax and regulatory environment in which it operates.
This would represent a decline on the €143.4m generated in the operator’s 2018 financial year. This projected decline was attributed to legal uncertainty in the Swiss market, where a new regulatory framework in which only land-based operators are permitted to operate online came into force from 1 January.
EBITDA for the year is expected to fall between €29m and €33m.