Acquisitions and US expansion drive growth at Flutter in 2022
In a preliminary results announcement, the operator said its US-facing FanDuel brand continued to increase its market share, with this reaching 50% in the online sportsbook segment in Q4 and 21% for igaming, with the US business expected to be earnings-positive in 2023 before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA).
Elsewhere, Flutter was able to strengthen its presence in other countries around the world, including in Italy through the acquisition of Sisal in August. Both revenue and EBITDA were up at Sisal in 2022.
In addition, Flutter acquired bingo operator Tombola in January last year, with this leading to a 4% increase in UK and Ireland revenue for the full year.
With both Sisal and Tombola being part of the Flutter business for the entirety of 2023, and further expansion plans in the US, including recent launches in Ohio and Maryland, Flutter chief executive Peter Jackson (pictured) said the business is on track for further growth in 2023.
“Flutter delivered a strong performance in 2022, continuing to execute on the strategic priorities we outlined last March,” Jackson said. “Growth in our recreational customer base delivered 2022 revenue growth of 27% and we ended the year with a record 12.1m average monthly players in Q4.
“We have an unparalleled number one position in the US where we continue to go from strength to strength. The combined power of the ‘FanDuel Advantage’ and the ‘Flutter Edge’ delivered our most successful launches to date in Maryland and Ohio.
“Outside of the US we have been pleased with the performance of the business as we faced into regulatory changes and challenging comparatives. We are well placed to build on gold medal positions in our mature markets while we are delivering very strong growth in a range of attractive high growth markets.”
Revenue for the 2022 financial year at Flutter amounted to £7.69bn (€8.66bn/$9.21bn), up 27% from £6.04bn in the previous year. Of this, £4.79bn came from sports betting, a year-on-year rise of 27%, while gaming revenue also climbed 28% to £2.91bn.
Flutter also noted the number of average monthly players across its business jumped 26% to 10.2m.
Breaking this performance down further, US revenue was up 67% to £2.60bn, with Flutter saying its FanDuel business was number one in 15 of the 18 states where it is active during the fourth quarter of the year.
Away from the US, UK and Ireland revenue increased 4% to £2.14bn, helped by a 54% hike in retail revenue to £272m, although Australia revenue fell by 2% at £1.26bn. International revenue jumped 31% to £1.68bn, helped by strong performances in Italy, India and Turkey.
In terms of spending, expenses were higher across the business, with cost of sales, sales and marketing expenses, other operating costs, corporate expenses and amortisation and depreciation all increasing year-on-year.
After also taking into account a 25% rise in finance expense, Flutter was left with a pre-tax profit of £518m, down 17% on the previous year due to higher spending. Flutter also paid £182m in income tax, resulting in a net profit of £336m, a 26% drop from £454m in 2021.
In addition, Flutter said adjusted EBITDA for the year was 4% higher at £1.05bn.
“2023 is off to a pleasing start driven by positive momentum from the end of last year,” Jackson said. “With our combined US business on track to deliver a positive EBITDA for the full year 2023 for the first time, the group is currently at an earnings’ transformation point and we look forward to delivering future growth and progressing further against Flutter’s strategic priorities in the coming year.”