William Hill Issue Profit Warning For 2016
William Hill is facing some challenging times as most of their rivals are merging to create new rules in the UK gambling market. Wednesday saw their share price fall as much as 11% ahead of their announcement that they were expecting full-year operating profit to be lower than last year.
One reason for the poor result is the fact that many online customers are taking self-imposed breaks from gambling. Added to that was the worst Cheltenham results in history with a lot of the favorites matching their pre-race billing. The mobile gambling trend is also having a serious impact on the William Hills shops and is resulting in lower revenues overall.
It is estimated that UK bookies lost up to £60 million due to this alone. The time outs for online accounts which is aimed at avoiding gambling addiction had increased 50 percent from the same period last year. Punters are opting to play responsibly and self-exclude themselves. According to CEO James Henderson around 3k players have done so since the beginning of the year.
To make things even worse William Hill say that if things do not pick up they expect FY 2016 profit to take a hit of £20m to £25m with operating profits expected to be around 15 percent less than 2015 to be around £260m to £280m.