BUSINESS

Skybet eyes international expansion for growth in 2017

TAGs: Richard Flint, Sky Betting and Gaming, SkyBet

British bookmaker Sky Betting & Gaming is eyeing international expansion next year to further boost its revenues and support the solid revenue growth it posted in UK.

Skybet eyes international expansion for growth in 2017The Financial Times reported that the firm, which runs SkyBet online gambling site, is keen on expanding in Germany and Italy, especially after it took over Sky Deutschland and Sky Italia from 21st Century Fox in 2014.

According to Skybet, the acquisition of both media companies in Germany and Italy have paved the way for the bookmaker to break out of the British market for the first time.

SkyBet Chief Executive Officer Richard Flint said the company has already begun testing the sports betting website in Germany and Italy to a small group of customers and, at the same time, has hired staff in the said countries.

The business, which will be formally launched in Germany and Italy next year, will follow a similar model as in the UK, according to Flint.

“We’re experts in mobile apps. We offer a great experience, particularly to the mass market sports bettor. And with the Sky brand and the relationship we have with the broadcaster has been successful in the UK,” Flint said, according to the business news agency. “We see that being replicated at a high level Germany and Italy, although the exact mechanics of what broadcasters are looking for and what individual programs might be looking for will depend on the needs of the local market.”

Meanwhile, SkyBet announced that its full-year revenue ending June 30 surged by 51 percent to £373.6 million (US$ 462.02 million) compared to £247.5 million (US$306.08 million) a year earlier. No figures for profit were available.

The British bookmaker attributed the higher revenue to its betting division, which climbed by 64 percent and accounted for £214.1 million (US$264 77 million) of group revenues. Its gaming division, which runs brands such as Sky Casino, Sky Bingo and Sky Poker, accounted for £159.5 million (US$ 197.25 million), representing a 36 percent increase.

Skybet also reported that its number of customer grew to 1.95 million compared with 1.48m a year earlier.

Sought for his comment on a report that CVC is planning to capitalize on its current performance by making plans for an initial public offering that would value the group at £1.5bn, Flint said: “There is no plan or timescale for a float. At some point, CVC will want to exit and IPO is a possibility but there is no timescale.”

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