Ladbrokes Coral digital recovery offsets UK retail declines

Publishing its Q3 trading update (period ending 29 October), FTSE-listed sports betting group Ladbrokes Coral Plc continues to record a strong digital momentum, offsetting the year decline of its UK retail betting division.

Closing in on its first full-year of post-merger operations, Ladbrokes Coral reports improved Q3 group net revenues of 3%, primarily driven by a 12% net revenue uplift in its group digital assets.

However, the FTSE bookmaker continues to suffer declines in its UK retail division (the firm’s biggest revenue generating channel), which declined 1% in net revenues during the trading period.

The firm’s stagnant UK retail division is currently -4% (net revenue) for its year-to-date performance.  Ladbrokes Coral governance details that it has moved to strengthen racing content within its UK betting estates by agreeing on a new content deal with The Racing Partnership. Furthermore, the operator expects to undertake structural improvements to its UK retail division helping improving long-term profitability.

Despite its UK retail decline, Ladbrokes Coral governance highlighted the strong gains of its European Retail portfolio which recorded a 17% net revenue increase during the period.

Updating investors, Ladbrokes Coral Group CEO, Jim Mullen commented on Q3 trading

“The four-month period to 29 October represents another period of positive trading performance for the Group as well as solid delivery on the key operational and financial targets for the year including the swift integration of people, operations and platforms.

Our Digital performance is strong and the Ladbrokes brand in Australia and the Eurobet brand in Italy continue to post very strong revenue growth.

In the UK, the Coral and Gala brands also posted very pleasing growth, and we continue to transition our approach to customer acquisition and retention in Ladbrokes.com to focus on improved profit conversion. In UK Retail, performance improved in line with our expectations primarily driven by the return of all horse-racing content to our shops”.

It has been well documented that Ladbrokes Coral will be the most affected UK betting Plc, should the UK government adopt stringent restrictions on FOBTs machine wagering policy. Updating stakeholders Ladbrokes Coral governance, stated that it would be an active participant in the UK government’s current 12-week consultation period with regards to the crucial matter.

“Ladbrokes Coral reached its first birthday on 1st November, the day after the further consultation on the Triennial Review was announced. We have existed with the uncertainty caused by the review since we were created and hope that the announcement of a 12 week consultation heralds a positive step to reaching a final outcome. We will take a full part in the consultation.” commented Mullen on the FOBTs update.

Ladbrokes Coral Q3 2017 – Performance Overview