Entain, the parent company of Ladbrokes and Coral, has announced a strong start to 2023, reporting record numbers of active customers in its trading update. The company’s net gaming revenue (NGR) for the first three months of the year rose by 11% in constant currency, driven by solid performances in both online and retail. The 50% share that the firm has in US operator BetMGM also contributed to the rise, as its inclusion boosted NGR by 17%. Online NGR rose by 11%, while retail NGR rose by 13%.
Entain’s US joint venture BetMGM also reported strong numbers, recording first-quarter NGR of around $470m, an increase of 76% from last year. The company said BetMGM had a 17% share in the sports betting and iGaming markets in which it operates, and was on track to become profitable in the second half of 2023.
Entain CEO Jette Nygaard-Andersen said: “2023 is off to a strong start, with continuing underlying momentum across our operations around the world. We are delivering both financially and strategically, with a record number of active customers enjoying our products, and we are executing on growth opportunities to further diversify and expand across regulated markets.
“In the US, BetMGM continues to grow in line with expectations and enjoyed a successful quarter which included the Super Bowl and March Madness. Looking ahead, we remain confident that our customer focus, diversification and proven ability to grow organically and through M&A will enable us to demonstrate further progress against our strategy.”
Despite the solid numbers, the company’s CFO Rob Wood acknowledged that affordability measures had resulted in a low-single-digit net revenue fall year-on-year for online in the UK. On a pro forma basis, online NGR increased by 1%, which represents a return to growth compared to the 1% fall in 2022. Excluding the impact of regulation in the UK and Germany, online NGR would have increased by 6%.
David Brohan, gaming and leisure analyst at Goodbody, said Entain had delivered a strong start to the year in line with expectations. By Tuesday lunchtime, the company’s shares had risen by more than 2% to 1,337p.