Pre-Close Trading Update
26 June 2020
888 Holdings Public Limited Company
('888', the 'Group')
Pre-Close Trading Update
As a result of trading during the year to date, the Board now anticipates FY20 adjusted EBITDA to be significantly ahead of its prior expectations
888, one of the world most popular online gaming entertainment and solutions providers, provides the following pre-close trading update covering the period from 1 January to 23 June 2020.
Over recent months the Group has remained mindful of the ongoing uncertainty and restrictions facing many consumers across 888's global markets as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. 888 has continued to prioritise preventing gambling-related harm by proactively communicating with customers regarding safe gambling and leveraging its unique Observer monitoring system in order to protect customers and help them stay in control of their betting activity.
As announced in the Group's trading update dated 24 March 2020, 888 traded well during the first quarter of 2020. The Board is pleased to confirm that 888 has continued to trade well since that date and despite some moderation to revenue growth in recent weeks, average daily revenue in the year to date has been 34% higher than the prior year. This performance reflects the Group's increased levels of customer acquisition during the second half of 2019 across several regulated markets. In addition, the Group has benefited from the structural shift towards online services that has accelerated across several consumer-facing industries during recent months.
As a result of the Group's trading during the year to date the Board now anticipates that 888 will achieve an adjusted EBITDA outcome for 2020 significantly ahead of its prior expectations.
Whilst the Group has encouraging momentum, the Board is mindful of possible headwinds in the second half of the year including the potential for a period of prolonged global macro-economic uncertainty that could impact consumers' discretionary spending. Despite this, the Board remains confident that 888, underpinned by its unique technology and diversification across product verticals and geographic markets, remains well positioned to deliver further strategic progress in the second half of 2020 and beyond.
Itai Pazner, CEO of 888 commented: "We are pleased with 888's trading during the year to date which has resulted in the Board now anticipating that adjusted EBITDA for 2020 will be significantly ahead of its prior expectations. This performance builds on 888's strong customer acquisition during 2019 and our continued focus during recent years on entertaining a greater number of recreational customers.
We have delivered a particularly encouraging performance in Poker which reflects the strength of our product and ongoing focus on providing a safe and entertaining destination for recreational poker players. Whilst Sport has been impacted during the year to date by the cancellation of events, we have seen a better than expected customer reaction to the gradual return of sports events during recent weeks and, during June so far, our sport revenue run-rate has been ahead of June 2019.
Our global teams have demonstrated fantastic flexibility and commitment as they have had to adapt to new ways of working over recent months. I am pleased to report that we are now in the early phases of enabling some of our teams to return to our offices whilst continuing to ensure that we prioritise their well-being and follow all relevant guidelines.
888 is well positioned to continue to benefit from a potential long-term shift towards online services that we have seen accelerate across several consumer industries during the COVID-19 pandemic. We remain vigilant about our responsibilities to protect customers and prevent gambling-related harm. We continue to take a number of proactive measures to communicate with players about safe gambling and invest in our products and technology to ensure that we always deliver a fun and, above all, safe place to play."
THIS ANNOUNCEMENT CONTAINS INSIDE INFORMATION FOR THE PURPOSES OF ARTICLE 7 OF REGULATION (EU) NO 596 /2014.
The person responsible for making this announcement is Itai Pazner, Chief Executive Officer of the Group
Contacts and enquiries:
+350 200 49800
Itai Pazner, Chief Executive Officer
Hudson Sandler (Financial PR)
[email protected] or +44(0) 207 796 4133
Alex Brennan / Bertie Berger / Hattie Dreyfus
Notes to Editors:
888 Holdings plc (and together with its subsidiaries, "888" or the "Group") is one of the world's most popular online gaming entertainment and solutions providers. 888's mission is to supply its customers with innovative and market-leading online gaming products, above all in a safe and secure environment.
888 has been at the forefront of the online gaming industry since foundation in 1997, providing to players and B2B partners an always innovative and world-class online gaming experience. At the heart of 888's business is its proprietary gaming technology and associated platforms.
During 2019 888 was named Casino Operator of the Year at the prestigious EGR industry awards and, in 2020, the company was proud to be recognised at the 2020 Gaming Intelligence awards as winner in the Casino Operator of the Year category.
The Group is structured into two lines of business: B2C, under the 888 brands, and B2B, conducted through Dragonfish, which provides partners a leading platform through which to establish an online gaming presence and monetise their own brands.
888's consumer facing websites offer more than just online gaming. They are entertainment destinations: places where people can enjoy a truly interactive experience and be part of an online community that shares common interests. 888's strong and trusted brands are all accessible through www.888.com.
Find out more about 888 at http://corporate.888.com/.
This announcement includes statements that are, or may be deemed to be, "forward-looking statements". By their nature, forward-looking statements involve risk and uncertainty since they relate to future events and circumstances. Forward-looking statements may and often do differ materially from actual results. Any forward-looking statements in this announcement reflect 888's view with respect to future events as at the date of this announcement. Save as required by law or by the Listing Rules or the Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules of the UK Listing Authority, 888 undertakes no obligation publicly to release the results of any revisions to any forward-looking statements in this announcement that may occur due to any change in its expectations or to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this announcement.
This information is provided by RNS, the news service of the London Stock Exchange. RNS is approved by the Financial Conduct Authority to act as a Primary Information Provider in the United Kingdom. Terms and conditions relating to the use and distribution of this information may apply. For further information, please contact [email protected] or visit www.rns.com.