May 15, 2019
Bookmaker William Hill benefits from US growth as UK stumbles
One year since the US repealed a federal ban on sports betting, William Hill, the British bookmaker, hailed its growth in the US market as it looked to offset declining online revenue at home mainly due to stricter regulation. The FTSE 250 gambling group has doubled the sports wagering it handles in the US since the repeal of the ban on sports betting on May 14 last year, it said in a trading update on Wednesday. The group said that overall gaming revenue was down 15 per cent due to the impact of a cut in the maximum stake to the electronic slot machines known as fixed-odd betting terminals in the UK. Online net revenue in William Hill's domestic market fell 8 per cent, the update said. William Hill said that online revenues rose 8 per cent thanks to its acquisition of Swedish online gaming business Mr Green, which it completed in January, but that this was offset by greater customer due diligence costs. William Hill is the only British bookmaker to have secured licences in all of the US states that have legalised sports betting since the federal ban was repealed, including Iowa, which put in place legislation this week.
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