XLMedia forecasts FY revenue growth despite further casino “weakness”

| By Robert Fletcher
Affiliate giant XLMedia has forecast a year-on-year revenue growth in its 2021 financial year, despite expecting “ongoing weakness” in its European casino business.

In a statement released ahead of the business’s annual general meeting today (27 May), chief executive Stuart Simms said revenue is likely to reach between $65m (£46m/€53m) and $70m.

The lower end of this estimation would represent an 18.2% year-on-year increase on the $55m posted in 2020, while the upper end of the forecast would mean a 27.3% rise.

Simms said this forecast was based on what he described as a “solid start” to 2021 by the business, supported by a good performance in the personal finance and European sport verticals

He also noted XLMedia’s recent acquisitions in US sports vertical will continue to partially offset ongoing declines across its European casino assets.

In March, XLMedia acquired sportsbook review website Sports Betting Dime for $35.6m, while the affiliate in December also purchased US-focused sports gaming and sports betting business CBWG Sports.

“The integration of our US sports assets is progressing well and is expected to add materially to the group revenue for the current financial year and beyond,” Simms said. 

“However, and as previously disclosed, we expect revenues in the casino vertical to decline further in 2021 and will continue to adjust our cost base accordingly as we further stabilise this vertical in the medium term.  

“We expect this decline to be partially offset by the improving performance of both European sport and North American personal finance.”

Simms added that XLMedia plans to we continue to invest in the ongoing transformation of the business, including the systems and technology to support its growth plans. 

“This investment, and the additional operating costs associated with the recent acquisitions, will hold back profit progression in the current year,” Simms said.

“In the medium term, the company expects to deliver year-on-year profitable revenue growth and to leverage the infrastructure investment to reduce ongoing operating costs, leading to a gradual return to the operating margin levels last experienced in 2019.”

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