Sports betting and gaming entertainment group Entain shared on Thursday a trading update for the fourth quarter and the financial year 2021 ended Dec. 31. The company saw a strong year performance, which “evidences Entain’s high growth dynamics,” and now expects FY21 EBITDA in the range of £875 million - £885 million ($1.1 billion - $1.2 billion), ahead of previous expectations.
“2021 has been a successful and eventful period for Entain, and our market-leading platform has driven another year of strong, sustainable and diversified growth,” said Jette Nygaard-Andersen, Entain’s CEO. “All of our major markets have performed well. BetMGM, our hugely exciting business in the US, has been a particular highlight with FY21 net gaming revenue ahead of expectations and an upgraded outlook for 2022.”
Entain posted group net gaming revenue up 7% year-on-year. Online NGR was up 12% -18% excluding Germany-, a growth which continues to be actives-driven, with actives up 25% year-on-year. Retail NGR, however, was down 3%, reflecting more Covid-19 restrictions than the prior year.
2021 was a year packed with excitement for Entain.— Entain (@EntainGroup) January 20, 2022
Today, we delivered a trading update to the market to show how far we’ve come on our growth journey in the last quarter and over 2021, and we’re pleased to say that it has been a strong year!💜
READ 👇 https://t.co/iXe5ih4VMh
A robust performance was also posted in Q4, with group NGR up 4% versus the same quarter in FY20. Online NGR was down 9%, ahead of expectations, albeit down versus the prior year due to particularly strong comparatives. With most shops open for the period, NGR for Q4 in Retail was up 60% year-on-year, with volumes returning to within 10% of pre-Covid levels.
The Ladbrokes and Bwin owner also lists among financial highlights the performance posted by BetMGM, the group’s joint venture in the US with MGM Resorts, which continues to perform “strongly.” In FY21, the brand delivered NGR of approximately $850 million, up nearly 5 times versus the prior year.
BetMGM has also achieved a 24% share in sports betting and iGaming in the markets in which it operates for the three months to November, and now maintains a market leadership position in iGaming with a 30% market share. As a result, the brand now expects net revenue of over $1.3 billion in 2022, and anticipates reaching positive EBITDA in 2023.
BetMGM CEO Adam Greenblatt.
The estimated net revenue update also follows a successful launch in the New York sports betting market, described by BetMGM CEO Adam Greenblatt as “the best of any live launch.” It led the brand to break records for most registrations, most first-time depositors, for deposits, for most bets, and for handle.
But in addition to the success of its joint venture for the US, Entain also delivered a series of operational highlights in other segments and brands. The group also made an additional investment of £25 million ($34 million) in the New Opportunities business segment in 2022, to support the launch of its first esports skill-based wagering products this year.
“We have also made significant operational progress and have continued to provide our customers with even better content, experiences and excitement as the worlds of media, entertainment, technology and gaming converge,” Nygaard-Andersen commented on the period.
We’re three years into our @BetMGM journey. Since then, we've grown and are the No.2 operator in the US.🦁📈— Entain (@EntainGroup) January 19, 2022
The road ahead is nothing short of exciting and the best is yet to come. This year, BetMGM will launch in Canada and Puerto Rico! 🇨🇦🇵🇷
“As ever, our sustainability efforts have been at the core of everything that we do,” she added. “We have continued to lead the way in the critically important area of player protection, and our technology-based Advanced Responsibility and Care programme is progressing well.”
The group continued progress on its ESG initiatives under its Sustainability Charter and the Entain Foundation -the not-for-profit charitable trust of Entain- launched EnTrain, a new multi-million-pound global initiative to increase access to technology and improve diversity. The company’s ARC programme advanced with real-time customer interaction trials underway and initial stages of international rollout.
"We continue to see significant growth opportunities ahead of us, with a total addressable market of around $160 billion across our new and existing markets, as well as in emerging areas of interactive entertainment,” Entain’s CEO commented. “We believe these opportunities will enable us to at least treble the size of our business.”