BUSINESS

Betsson enjoys “highest quarterly figure ever” thanks to Dutch acquisitions

TAGs: 2014 FIFA World Cup, Betsson, kroon casino, oranje casino, Sweden

betsson-magnus-silfverbergSwedish online gambling operator Betsson says the three-month period ending Sept. 30 was its “highest quarterly figure ever reported.” Revenue rose 30% year-on-year to SEK 782.1 (US $107.8m) while earnings rose 36% to SEK 207.2m and profit came to SEK 193.4m ($26.6m), a gain of 37% over Q3 2013. For the first nine months of 2014, Betsson revenue is up 22% and profit is up 30% to SEK 527.6m.

Much of the gains were attributable to Betsson’s February acquisition of the Oranje and Kroon online casino brands. The Dutch-facing brands accounted for SEK 83.9m of Betsson’s Q3 revenue and SEK 47.9m of profits. Minus these additions, revenue growth was a more modest 16%, but Betsson expects these two brands will grow by 40% once the Dutch market finally gets around to launching its regulated online gambling market (sometime in Q1 2016, according to Betsson’s best guess).

Betsson says customer deposits are also at an all-time high, rising 35% to SEK 2.7b. The feat is all the more impressive given the number of active customers fell by 60k to 363k, although this was up from 318k in Q2. Betsson has adopted a new policy of focusing on “value-adding players, rather than on free spin promotions.”

Betsson’s B2C operations accounted for 76.1% of revenue, losing three points to its B2B operations. Nordic markets’ contribution to profits fell 12.6 points to 72.8% while non-Nordic EU markets nearly doubled to 26.1%.

Casino’s share of overall revenue dipped 1.2 points to 64.5%, with sports gaining 3.5 points to 31.5%. Poker’s share slipped 1.7 points to 2.5% and ‘Other’ dipped to 1.4%.

Casino revenue rose 28% to SEK 423.7m ($58.4m) while poker fell 24% to just SEK 16m ($2.2m). Mobile channels accounted for 23% of overall revenue, up more than a third over Q2 thanks to new apps for the Automaten and Triobet.com brands. Mobile was especially important to sports betting, accounting for 40% of turnover, up from 30% in Q2.

In July, Betsson CEO Magnus Silfverberg (pictured) had reported that betting activity surrounding the 2014 FIFA World Cup had “exceeded out expectations,” but World Cup wagering accounted for a mere 1.5% of Betsson’s Q3 revenues. Nonetheless, Betsson’s sportsbook revenue rose 47% year-on-year to SEK 207.2m. Sports revenue was almost perfectly split between B2C and B2B divisions, and while B2C betting handle was barely half the B2B tally, B2C margin was nearly twice the B2B rate, allowing B2C revenue to eclipse B2B by a mere SEK 200k. However, B2B profit growth was 75.7% compared to 26.8% for B2C.

Betsson also celebrated becoming what it described as “the largest pure online company on Nasdaq Stockholm” in terms of stock market value. That said, the stock closed out Friday down 2.5%, so maybe don’t frame that award just yet.

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