William Hill Looking Good All Round

WILLIAM HILL LOOKING GOOD ALL ROUND

01st March, 2013 at 15:08:00
Source: http://www.azonlinecasinos.com

Reports outstanding growth in Online with particular emphasis on mobile

On the back of the anticipated buy-out of Playtech's share in William Hill Online (WHO), the firm delivered strong results and good progress in its final results report for the 52 weeks ended December 25, 2012.

Key performance highlights include:

- Group net revenue up 10% to 1,276.9 million (2011: 1,254.9 million)

- Retail net revenue of 837.9 million, up 4% (2011: 825 million)

- Online net revenue of 406.7 million, up 24% (2011: 398.5 million), its third consecutive year of growth above 20 percent.

- Operating profit up 18% to 330.6 million (2011: 326.4 million)

- William Hill Online delivered "outstanding growth" in Sportsbook net revenue - up 50 percent, driving overall net revenue up 27% and Operating profit up 36 percent.

- Mobile Sportsbook turnover was up 260% of which 32% of total Sportsbook betting in December was conducted via mobile.

- Basic adjusted earnings per share up 20% and dividend up 17 percent

- Profit before tax of 277.7 million, up 46% (2011: 274.2 million)

- Profit after tax of 231 million, up 56% (2011: 228.1 million)

- Continued strong cash flow from operations reduced net debt for covenant purposes by 77 million to 339 million against 27 December 2011.

Mobile remains a priority for William Hill while strong results from its sportsbook app and subsequent launch of an iPad app delivered more than 90 000 new customers. Mobile is generating over one third of William Hill's sportsbook turnover at present.

Ralph Topping, Chief Executive of William Hill, commenting on the results said: "Today marks a major milestone for William Hill as we propose taking full control of William Hill Online. This move rounds off a successful 12 months which have seen us take our first steps into the US and, through the pending Sportingbet acquisition, lay the foundations for growth in the attractive Australian market.

"William Hill Online has consistently delivered strong net revenue growth since it was formed in December 2008. Having been advised of the valuation of Playtech's 29% interest, the Board has concluded that it is in the best interests of our shareholders to exercise our call option to assume full ownership of this attractive, high growth, high performing business."

"I am pleased to report that the team has remained tightly focused on operational matters and has delivered a strong 2012 organic performance across both Retail and Online channels. Retail has continued to deliver revenue and profit growth, while William Hill Online recorded another outstanding year, particularly in mobile which has significantly outperformed our expectations and very much remains a high priority for us.

"With our well-recognised William Hill brand, strong management team and multi-channel capability, we are well placed to take full advantage of both the organic growth potential of the enlarged business and the new opportunities that are opening up to us."

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