Home > Finance > Sports betting and igaming push revenue up at FDJ in first nine months

Sports betting and igaming push revenue up at FDJ in first nine months

| By Robert Fletcher
French national lottery operator Française des Jeux (FDJ) said growth in its sports betting and igaming business pushed revenue up 3.9% to €1.88bn (£1.64bn/$1.99bn) during the first nine months of 2023.

Updating the market, FDJ reported strong growth in the nine months to 30 September. This reporting period covers the first, second and third quarter of the operator’s 2023 financial year.

Lottery remains by far FDJ’s primary source of revenue, with the business generating €1.41bn in the period. However, this was 1.2% lower than in the previous year, with draw stakes also down 6.0%.

FDJ says that this was partly due to a reduced number of high EuroMillions jackpot draws compared to last year. The operator also says it was impacted by the relaunch of its Amigo draw game in June. 

Excluding EuroMillions and Amigo, revenue was up 3.0%, draw stakes edged up 1.0% and lottery stakes 3.0%.

FDJ notes sports betting and igaming success

In contrast to the lottery decline, FDJ’s sports betting and igaming reported a 9.3% rise in revenue to €360m. FDJ says this is in line with increasing stakes across the two segments.

A further €103m in revenue came from other, undisclosed activities. This was up 10.0% year-on-year.

Looking at stakes across the entire business, stakes in points of sales increased by 0.8% to €13.28bn. This was driven by sports betting and instant games, despite the impact of the Amigo relaunch.

As for digital stakes, these jumped 10.6% to €2.01bn. FDJ says digital stakes were higher in all business areas, with more players turning to gambling online. 

Gross gaming revenue across the business was €4.81bn. FDJ paid €3.04bn in public levies during the period, leaving the €1.88bn revenue total.

Strong demand set to continue in Q4

Turning to full-year expectations, FDJ hopes to achieve revenue growth of approximately 5.0%. It also expects current EBITDA margin rate to be maintained at 24.0% thanks to tight control of costs.

“Our growth remains solid, with strong players’ demand, even though it has been affected by the low number of EuroMillions high jackpot draws,” FDJ CEO and chairwoman Stéphane Pallez said.

FDJ finalises ZEturf and Premier Lotteries Ireland acquisitions

During the latter part of the nine-month period, FDJ finalised two major acquisitions. These came in the form of online horse racing betting site ZEturf Group and Premier Lotteries Ireland (PLI), operator of the Irish National Lottery.

The PLI deal was announced in late July and is due to complete next month, while ZEturf was acquired just days after the end of the period. FDJ agreed to €350.0m to acquire PLI while the ZEturf deal, first announced late last year, was valued at €175.0m.

Purchasing PLI marks FDJ’s first steps into the international B2C lottery market. PLI will be consolidated by FDJ, with the aim of accelerating PLI’s growth and increase its profitability.

In 2022, PLI posted €140.0m, with an EBITDA margin comparable to that of FDJ.

As for ZEturf, the business is the second largest online horse betting operator in France, with a market share of approximately 20%. FDJ says the deal makes it the fourth largest online gaming operator in the country, offering sports betting, horse betting and poker.

ZEturf posted more than €50.0m in revenue in 2022. As such, FDJ says adding ZEturf to its business will double revenue within its online gaming segment. 

“The completion of the acquisitions illustrates our strategy of internationalisation and diversification,” Pallez said. “We are delighted that the teams of these two operators are joining FDJ and that these operations will contribute to the group’s sustainable and profitable growth.”

Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter