Revenue up at Betfair as New Jersey operation pulls online poker service

Revenue up at Betfair as New Jersey operation pulls online poker service

Thursday, December 4, 2014 Totally Gaming

Betfair has reported a significant year-on-year revenue jump during the six months through to October 31, while the online gambling firm’s US arm has reportedly opted to end its internet poker offering in New Jersey.

The operator posted revenue of £237.6m (€301m/$372.9m) in the first half of the year, a figure that represents an increase of 26 per cent in comparison to the amount achieved in the corresponding period last year.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) jumped 51 per cent to £73.9m while its active customer base increased by 50 per cent. In addition, Betfair said it expects to return £200m to shareholders as a result of the positive figures.

The operator said its growth during the first half was driven by an expanded customer base, the impact of the Fifa World Cup national football team tournament, as well as favourable results in the English Premier League club competition and the Uefa European Championship national team qualifiers.

Breon Corcoran, chief executive of Betfair, said: “These results demonstrate strong delivery against our strategy for achieving sustainable growth that we outlined two years ago. We have substantially strengthened our competitive position by investing in products that differentiate Betfair and by enhancing our marketing capabilities in a crowded market place.

“Innovative products such as Cash Out, Cash Back Extra and Price Rush, coupled with a relentless focus on providing value through market leading promotions and odds, have allowed Betfair to acquire and retain more customers than ever before. Over one million customers bet with us in the first half of the year, a 50 per cent increase on last year.

“Betfair has also delivered considerable operational gearing and, as a result, strong top line growth has led to substantial EBITDA margin expansion and strong cash generation.”

Meanwhile, Betfair has reportedly closed its online poker website in the US state of New Jersey.

Tax returns filed with the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement show that the operator’s Betfair New Jersey arm posted $0 in October 2014 poker rake, while its poker tables earned just $1 in September.

Betfair New Jersey’s poker rake through the first 10 months of 2014 was $50, while Betfair Poker raked $90 during the five weeks it operated in 2013.

Betfair has noted that the withdrawal of its online poker service from the New Jersey market will not impact its casino website in the state, nor its poker operations outside of the US.

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