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New regulations could hit Flutter’s finances

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The company said that its UK revenues fell 4% to €169 million. Credits: thestreet.com

Flutter Entertainment has reported that newly introduced responsible gambling regulations may impact its earnings.

Ireland.- Flutter Entertainment, which was formerly called PaddyPower Betfair, has revealed that the first six months of the year have registered an 18% increase in revenue to €1.1 billion. Profits, however, reported a 24% decline as Flutter’s tax bill got bigger.

The company said that the revenue results experienced a boost from an 8% increase in online revenues and 148% in the nascent US market. Pre-tax profits fell 24% to €87.9 million, affected by a new point of consumption tax in Australia and its US investment.

“We are very excited about the prospect in the US. It could be the largest online betting market in the world,” said Peter Jackson, Flutter chief executive.

Despite some positive results for Flutter, the company said that its UK revenues fell 4% to €169 million. The results come after the recent introduction on the limit of maximum stake on fixed-odds betting machines (FOBTs) from £100 to £2. The numbers were significantly less worrying than those from the company’s rivals. Flutter said that it is confident that it could take market share as less profitable competitors start economising operations after these regulations.

Moreover, Flutter said that it will retreat from markets where regulations are ambiguous. The company named Switzerland and Serbia, as it believes that those territories could impact earnings from the Betfair exchange.

“We have had another productive six months at Flutter Entertainment. All divisions are performing strongly on an underlying basis and have responded well to the challenges faced. We are happy with the progress we are making to build a more diversified and sustainable business,” said Jackson.

The rebrand

Paddy Power Betfair recently rebranded as Flutter Entertainment. Company shareholders overwhelmingly supported the measure by passing it with 99.7% of the total votes. The rebrand was first announced in the company’s 2018 full-year report.

The special resolution so that the company could formalise its plans to change its name took place during the group’s Annual General Meeting. Paddy Power Betfair will rebrand to Flutter Entertainment, as it believes that the name should reflect “the group’s diverse nature of the global brands that we have.”

“With this change of corporate name this isn’t a signal of any significant change to our strategy,” CEO Jackson said.

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