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World Cup drives online growth at GVC

| By iGB Editorial Team
Online revenue was up 18% in the first half

Ladbrokes Coral owner GVC Holdings said the FIFA World Cup was a “good one”, as it cited the tournament as the main reason behind a strong online performance during the first half of the year.

Overall net gaming revenue (NGR) climbed 8% year-on-year, with this growth partly driven by GVC’s online business, which performed well in the period and posted NGR 18% higher than last year.

GVC noted that prior to the World Cup kicking off in Russia, online NGR was up 15% and the early stages of the tournament helped push this to a higher level by the end of the half.

The World Cup ran from June 14 to July 15, with GVC’s six-month period ending on June 30. The period included the completion of the company's £4bn (€4.49bn/$5.55bn) acquisition of Ladbrokes Coral in March.

Keith Alexander, chief executive of GVC, said: “I am pleased to report this positive trading update whilst at the same time undertaking the integration of the Ladbrokes Coral business.

“The strong momentum across the online business has continued and means we are well placed to deliver against our full year expectations.”

Although GVC reported a 3% decline in UK retail like-for-like revenue in the first half, the company did say that trends improved due to a lengthy spell of good weather in the UK and higher betting levels during the World Cup.

“The World Cup tournament as a whole has been a good one for the group, helped by a better than expected gross win margin but also importantly volumes and value of new customer deposits,” the company said in a statement.

In contrast, European retail NGR was up 29% year-on-year, but GVC said this was “helped by a soft comparative”.

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