XLMedia’s first half revenue dips 34%

Finance News

XLMedia a leading global digital performance publisher, today provides the following trading update for the six months ended 30 June 2023 (“H1 2023”).

In H1 2023, total revenues were approximately US$29.4 million (H1 2022: US$44.5 million) and total Adjusted EBITDA was approximately US$6.5 million (H1 2022: US$10.6 million). Adjusted EBITDA for the full year remains in line with management’s expectations after adjustment for the sale of the three European Casino Assets announced on 12 July 2023.

As previously reported, the Group’s period-on-period performance reflects the timing, number and scale of new state launches in the United States (“US”). In particular, operator marketing activity around the launch of New York (the fourth most populated state) in January 2022, was not repeated at the same level with the launch in January 2023 of online sports betting in Ohio (the seventh most populated state).

In contrast, the Group has delivered new growth across the core assets in Europe in both Gaming and Sport, whilst also reducing cost and simplifying the organisation structure, including reducing the Group’s overall headcount by 14% during the period.

The launch of online sports betting in Ohio provided a strong start to the year coupled with the growing revenues from Freebets.com, our premium Europe/UK sports betting site, resulted in revenue of approximately US$21.4 million (H1 2022: US$34.0 million) in the Group’s Sports vertical.

Our EU Sports operations contributed approximately US$5.2 million (H1 2022: US$3.8 million) with notable highlights around the performance from Freebets.com. Real Money Players (“RMPs”) grew in H1 2023 by 36% period-on-period and revenue grew in by 50% period-on-period resulting from a strong Cheltenham Festival, the Grand National meeting at Aintree, Royal Ascot and a good end to the English Premier League football season.

North America saw several operators limit their marketing spend, reducing customer acquisition activity around the Superbowl and the offseason, as they reviewed marketing tactics in the evolving US market. Together, the Massachusetts and Ohio launches did not reach the same scale as New York’s launch did in 2022. North America Sports revenues were US$16.2 million (H1 2021: US$30.2 million). 

The delay in confirmation of the regulatory regime around the Massachusetts launch, combined with the launch occurring after the NFL season had ended resulted in a more muted initial revenue spike. However, the upcoming NFL season presents a second opportunity to launch sports betting in Massachusetts.

With the highly anticipated Kentucky launch in September 2023 expanding our operations to 20 states, our North American Sports business continues to be driven by the Group’s high-quality content, offering audiences both national and local sports coverage and sports betting content that builds engagement and trust to connect sports fans with operators when promotions are available. Additionally, the XLMedia teams continue to deliver exclusive sports betting content for media partners that offers targeted, relevant and engaging information for sports fans in those markets where it is permitted.