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Gambling firm 888 forecasts drop in half-year revenues

·1-min read

Gambling firm 888 has warned that half-year revenues are set to drop due to the UK’s crackdown on online gambling and its temporary exit from the Netherlands.

The group – which is soon to complete its £2.1 billion takeover of William Hill’s UK and European businesses – said turnover for the first half of the year is set to fall to between £330 million and £335 million, down from 528.4 million US dollars (£433.1 million) the previous year.

The firm said that, while “broadly” in line with its own expectations, the first half will be dented, with “growth in certain European markets offset by the impact of additional safer gambling measures as well as the temporary exit from the Netherlands”.

William Hill betting shops closures
888’s takeover over William Hill’s UK and European business is expected to complete on July 1 (Aaron Chown/PA)

The William Hill UK and European business – which it expects to take over on July 1 – is set to see revenues of £620 million to £630 million in the 26 weeks to June 28.

Shares in 888 fell 4% in morning trading on Thursday.

888 said revenues for William Hill – the UK’s second biggest high street bookmaker with 1,400 betting shops – were boosted by the reopening of retail sites thanks to easing pandemic restrictions, but offset by safer gambling measures for online betting, as well as the Netherlands closure.

888 agreed a £2.05 billion deal to buy William Hill’s UK and European business from US casino giant Caesars in April, after cutting the terms of the £2.2 billion price agreed seven months earlier.

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