888 Holdings profit falls on tax, settlement

Business News

888 holdings slashed its dividend after pre-tax profit slumped 68% to $18.8m for the year to the end of December amid a charge of $50.8m incurred during the period. 

The firm said $45.3m of the charge related to potential past VAT matters and $5.5m was in connection with the UK Gambling Commission settlement.

A final dividend of 5.9 cents per share was declared, plus an additional one-off 5.6 cents per share, taking the total for the year to 15.5 cents per share, down from 19.4 cents per share the prior year.

Revenue rose 4% to $541.8m from $520.8m supported by gains in its sport and casino businesses.

Revenue from the core B2C business – includes casino, poker, sport, and bingo – increased 6% to $486.6m from $460.2m, but B2B reported revenue slipped 9% to $55.2m from $60.6m.

The firm warned that ‘uncertainty exists’ in certain territories in which it operates. In Germany, a subsidiary of the group was prohibited from offering online gaming services in the state of Baden Wurttemberg.

Current trading since the start of the year was said to be in line with management’s expectations with average daily revenue 6% above the previous year, representing an 8% increase when adjusted for the withdrawn markets.