Retail closures test Playtech’s resilience

The operator remains optimistic following recovery in July.
The operator remains optimistic following recovery in July.

Disruption in retail and sports severely impacts Playtech’s H1 revenue.

UK.- Playtech has reported adjusted EBITDA for the first half of the year reached “more than £160million” despite suffering a severe hit due to the pandemic.

Revenue was mainly driven by the performance of the Isle of Man-headquartered company’s online division and its financial division, TradeTech.

Playtech said online casino, bingo and poker businesses performed “very well” in the first half and that although increased activity began to normalise as lockdown restrictions were eased, activity is still above pre-pandemic levels.

It said that its white label business, particularly Sun Bingo, had also performed strongly in H1.

The B2C gambling division was severely hit by retail closures, with Snaitech, the Italian sports betting brand, losing “significant revenue” from closures and from the cancellation or postponement of sports events.

The company’s B2B sports business was also “severely impacted” by retail closures in the UK and Greece.

However, Playtech said it had shown resilience during the pandemic and that the reopening of betting shops and the resumption of live sport had helped B2B sports revenues recover to an extent.

It said Snaitech had performed strongly in July with the reopening of retail sites supported by continued growth online following the resumption of live sports.

CEO Mor Weizer said: “Thanks to the outstanding response from our people and the early actions taken to protect the business, Playtech has demonstrated outstanding operational resilience during this challenging period.

“In addition to navigating near-term headwinds, we’ve continued to focus on setting up the business for success in the long-term. During the period, we’ve worked hard to add new brands, expand relationships with our existing customers and entered the New Jersey market with our long-standing strategic partner bet365.

“It is pleasing to see the impacted parts of the business starting to demonstrate positive momentum and I am confident the actions we have taken will help us emerge stronger and cement our market-leading position.”

Playtech is due to publish interim results on September 17. Last month Playtech sold its casual games subsidiary as it restructures to focus on its core gambling business.

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