Paddy Power records double digit growth in earnings in 2017

Business News

Double-digit revenue growth has strengthened Paddy Power Betfair’s balance sheet ahead of more regulation, the group said this morning.

Revenue jumped 13 per cent to over £1.7bn in 2017.

Earnings before interest tax depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) hit £473m, an increase of 18 per cent.

With earnings per share up 20 per cent, the group bumped its annual divided to 200p per share.

“Our scale, leading customer propositions and strong balance sheet mean we are well positioned ahead of the regulatory and fiscal changes expected in the UK, Australia and the USA,” commented Peter Jackson, the group’s new chief executive.

Unlike rival bookie William Hill, which announced the sale of its Australian business yesterday, Paddy Power has not yet showed any signs of being scared off from the gambling market down under.

In fact, this part of the business performed particularly well, with revenue growing by 29 per cent.

But this accounts for the period before the introduction of a credit betting ban, while this year and 2019 are likely to see widespread introduction of a point of consumption tax across Australian states.

Paddy Power said it would continue to invest in its proposition in the country and ramp up its benefits for loyal punters.

Other challenges include possible restrictions on fixed odds betting terminals in the UK, though Paddy Power’s former CEO has already expressed support for a dramatic limitation of wagers.

CEO Peter Jackson said: “We saw the benefits of investing in our customer propositions in 2017, with Sportsbet launching a number of product features that give extra value to customers and Betfair moving to a clear market leadership position in its football pricing.

“Now the Paddy Power brand is operating with an improved product, we will increase marketing spend to align with its mass market positioning and step up the retention-focused investment that we started in 2017. At the same time, we also plan to increase our investment in international markets.”