Nils Andén named interim CEO at Kindred Group
Andén steps in to replace Henrik Tjärnström, who spent more than a decade at the helm of Kindred.
Sweden.- It’s all change at Kindred Group this month. Just days after announcing a search for a new CFO to replace Johan Wilsby, Henrik Tjärnström has resigned as CEO. He’ll be replaced by Nils Andén on an interim basis.
Tjärnström has led the Stockholm Nasdaq-listed online gambling group since July 2010. Before that, he served in the joint post of deputy CEO and CFO, which he took up in 2008. He joined the company, then Unibet, in 2003 as a non-executive director and member of the audit committee.
Tjärnström said: “I am very pleased with the board of directors’ choice of Nils Andén as the interim CEO, guaranteeing a smooth hand over.”
Andén spent a decade at Kindred between 2006 and 2016 as head of poker, head of established markets and chief marketing officer for Unibet. He returned in 2020 as chief commercial officer. He will now be responsible for seeing through Kindred’s aim to improve profitability and meet its target of 0 per cent revenue from problem gambling.
He said: “I look very much forward to working closely with our board of directors, the executive management team and all employees to achieve the goals of Kindred.”
He added: “I have a strong belief in our organisation and the business models that have made this company so successful and am more confident than ever in Kindred’s potential.”
Evert Carlsson, chairman of the board said: “Henrik has been at the helm through many important milestones passed by Kindred and has undoubtedly put his mark in both the history of the company and the industry.
“Thus, on behalf of the board of directors and all shareholders, I would like to thank Henrik for his valuable contributions to the success of Kindred throughout the years he has led the company and wish him well in his future endeavours.”
Kindred reported improved group cash flow for Q1 at £29m, up from a loss of £5.5m a year earlier. Revenue has been buoyed by its re-entry into the Netherlands but remained down against 2021. Q1 revenue was £306m and post-tax profit was £26m, which compares to £353m and £73m in 2021.
Underlying EBITDA for 2022 was £129.2m, down 61 per cent. Profit after tax was £120.1m. The Stockholm-listed company has stressed that it is exploring strategic options, including possible mergers. It intends to focus on reducing losses in North America, re-prioritising investment projects and optimising group operating expenses to boost scalability.
In March, Kindred received two hefty fines from Britain’s Gambling Commission for social responsibility and anti-money laundering (AML) failures. The regulator fined Kindred’s 32Red £4.2m and the group’s Platinum Gaming £2.9m for a series of failings. It also issued warnings to both brands.
In January, Kindred announced two new executive appointments to its team. Rachel Randle-Williams was named as chief human resources officer while Sören Thörnlund is the company’s new chief technology officer. They replaced Gavin Hayward and Marcus Smedman.