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Paddy Power owner Flutter knocked by punter-friendly sports results

Gambling giant Flutter saw customer-friendly sports results and weak horse racing in Australia drag on trading, as it said earnings excluding the US market would be at the bottom of previous targets.

The Paddy Power and Betfair owner saw shares slump by more than a tenth in early trading as a result.

The world’s biggest online gambling firm also announced plans to delist from the stock market in Dublin when it adds a New York listing in the first quarter of 2024.

On Thursday, the company told shareholders it saw gaming growth drive a 13% increase in total revenues to £2.03 billion for the third quarter of 2023.

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Gaming revenues soared by 26% for the period, offsetting slower growth in its sports business, which recorded a 4% rise.

It said sports betting witnessed a 12 percentage point negative impact from “adverse sports results” against last year.

This included “very customer-friendly results in September and October”, the company added.

Nevertheless, Flutter said there was positive momentum in the UK and Ireland, as it was buoyed by “a strong start to the new season of the Premier League”.

However, the firm was knocked by declining racing revenues in Australia.

As a result, the company said group adjusted earnings, excluding the US, are now expected to be about £1.44 billion, at the bottom of a previously predicted range of £1.44 billion-£1.6 billion.

It comes after rivals Entain, which owns Ladbrokes, and 888 both cautioned over profits in recent months.

Peter Jackson, chief executive of the company, said: “The group had another strong quarter in Q3, and even in this seasonally quieter period the power of our diversified business is clear with revenue growth of 13%.

“We remain the number one choice for sports betting and gaming customers globally, and our 16% growth in average monthly players augurs well for our continued growth and market leadership.

“Overall, the significant potential for US growth and ability to leverage scale benefits across our diversified portfolio outside of the US underpins our confidence in our significant and sustainable long-term earnings growth potential.”