William Hill pushed into annual loss after slashing the value of its Australian business

Business News

William Hill said today that it slid to a loss in 2017, citing a 238.3 million-pound ($331.7 million) charge from its business in Australia related to regulatory and tax changes in the country.

The bookmaker posted a pretax loss of GBP74.6 million compared with a profit of GBP181.3 million a year earlier.

Revenue rose to GBP1.71 billion from GBP1.60 billion.

William Hill raised its final dividend to 8.9 pence a share from 8.4 pence. This brings the full-year dividend to 13.2 pence, up from 12.5 pence.

On Tuesday the U.K.’s Gambling Commission fined William Hill GBP6.2 million for violating money-laundering and social-responsibility regulations.

Chief Executive Philip Bowcock said a key pillar of the company’s strategy in the future will be to “act in a sustainable way” and that “while it is imperative that the gambling sector as a whole embraces this, there is no doubt that leading brands like William Hill must play a key role in setting the right standards and taking greater account of all our stakeholders”.