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Ladbrokes owner Entain sees online gaming sales jump a third

·2-min read
GVC financials
Gambling giant Entain also owns the Coral brand (Matt Alexander/PA)

Ladbrokes owner Entain said online revenues jumped by a third in the first three months of 2021 as it continued to see strong demand from punters stuck at home.

Shares in the gambling giant, which also owns Coral and Bwin, rose after it hailed the “strong” online performance.

Online net gaming revenues increased by 33% for the quarter to March 31 compared with the same period last year, in its 21st consecutive quarter of double-digit online growth.

The company said this was driven by positive trading across all its major markets except Germany, where a tightening of online gambling regulations weighed on trading.

Entain – which was renamed from GVC last year – told investors on Thursday that total net revenues fell by 13% over the quarter as a result of the closure of almost all of its more-than-3,000 betting shops.

Retail revenues plummeted by 99% compared with the same quarter a year ago as a result.

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In England and Wales, betting shops reopened on Monday as part of the second phase of the Government’s road map out of lockdown.

The group’s chief executive, Jette Nygaard-Andersen, said: “This has been another very successful and productive quarter, with Entain making excellent progress across a number of our strategic priorities.

“With some easing of Covid restrictions, we are delighted to be welcoming customers back into our shops.

“While it has only been a handful of days since the reopening in parts of the UK on April 12, we look forward to returning to more normal trading across our whole business.

“In line with our expectations, the momentum from the end of 2020 has carried into 2021.

“Although Covid creates some near-term uncertainty, by maintaining our focus on the customer, providing them with great products and services, we remain confident and excited in our long-term prospects.”

Shares in the company were 1.3% higher at 1,629.5p in early trading on Thursday.

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