Takeover target bwin.party entertainment has continued its corporate performance struggles into 2015, reporting a 6% year-on-year decrease in revenues to €155 million (Q1 2014: 166 million).
The operator’s group performance had been impacted by an unfavourable set of European football results recorded throughout the industry, combined with further declining performances on its online casino and poker verticals
Positives saw bwin.party governance highlighted that its mobile driven expansion had helped the operator increase sports betting revenues by 9% during the period to €738 million, however unfavourable results had impacted the vertical’s gross win margin to 8.7% down from 2014 10.3%, which reflected in the operators sports betting net revenues of €58 million.
The operator’s concentrated focus on mobile engagement, has seen it record 41% of sports betting wagers through mobile devices, the operator would record a 44% growth in mobile sports betting revenues during the Q1 2015 period.
Sports betting improved wagering and activity had not been supported by growth in bwin.party’s online casino vertical which had been impacted by VAT applications in a number of markets. Online Casino would record an 11% decline in net revenues to €46.8 million (Q1 2014: €52.6 million).
Further bad news for bwin.party would come from its poker vertical which recorded its biggest yearly decline in net revenues down 31% to €16.8 million. The vertical had seen a significant drop in player activity on the platform from 41,000 actives to 28,900 in Q1 2015.
Bingo would be the only vertical to record growth during quarter, up 1% to €13.8 million, the operator noted that its performance had been driven by the Foxy Bingo brand which had delivered increased player activity combined with improved player revenue performance.
bwin.party continues to overhaul its operations, with governance announcing that the company had implemented cost savings of €15 million following the sale of non-core business products, efficiency savings and the implementation of cost saving technology integrations.
Commenting on performance, Norbert Teufelberger, bwin.party CEO said:
“The Group has delivered solid growth since Q4 2014 on the back of continued mobile expansion. However, a lower than expected gross win margin in sports betting as experienced by other gaming operators and continued challenges in poker held back our year-on-year revenue performance during the first three months of 2015. Despite slightly lower revenue and additional taxes, continued careful management of our costs and further operational efficiencies have meant that Group Clean EBITDA margins for the first quarter are ahead of the Board’s expectations and also ahead of last year.
“We are making good progress in respect of our non-core asset disposals and remain on track to meet the €30-€50m target2 for sale proceeds this year.”
“In the period since the end of March, net gaming revenues are up 6% year-on-year, driven by sports betting that is up 25% year-on-year. Given our expanding mobile footprint, increased focus on the core business and the associated programme of operational efficiencies, we remain on-track for the full year.”
bwin.party Q1 2015 Performance overview