Many British bookmakers are in financial trouble because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Even one of the biggest names in the British casino industry, William Hill, has to deal with a decreasing total net revenue. In the weeks following the outbreak of the Corona virus and lockdowns in Europe and North America, the total not revenue of the company plunged with 57 percent.
Collapse of sports betting volumes
One of the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic is that sports betting events on location have been cancelled. Because of this, sports betting volumes collapsed within days. William Hill could do nothing else than close its network of betting shops. And there’s more bad news. The British bookmaker also had to deal with an online betting revenue loss of 21 percent in seven weeks, until April 28.
Official statement from William Hill
The bookmaker issued an official statement a couple of days ago. The revenue in the first ten weeks of 2020 has fallen by five percent. The fact that sports events were cancelled and that retail operations were forced to close in the United Kingdom and the United Kingdom meant that between March 11 and April 28 the total revenue fell by 57 percent.
Impact on core earnings
William Hill has pulled all future forecasts, since the Corona virus is so unpredictable. No one knows how long it will take until there’s a vaccine. The bookmaker expects that the impact on the core earnings will be at least 15 million pounds, because the shops are still closed
If most sports events remains suspended until August and if high street shops are still closed by that time, the impact on core earnings might be between 100 and 110 million pounds. William Hill suspended its dividend earlier in 2020
Already pressure on bookmakers before Covid-19
Bookmakers in the United Kingdom already had to deal with pressure before Covid-19 turned everything upside down. The companies paid more and more taxes and had to deal with new restrictions. For example, betting shops had to deal with a limit on the size of staking on gambling machines.
There’s good news as well. Germany’s soccer league, the Bundesliga, will return. Horseracing has assumed in France and will probably return to the United Kingdom in June. Besides that, online sports betting has declined less than William Gill expected. Many gamblers choose alternative sports now, such as table tennis.
When will the betting shops reopen?
William Hill wants to reopen its betting shops in the United Kingdom in the second half of the year. This is absolutely necessary, because the revenue of the bookmaker has plunged 50 per cent because of Corona. It’s looking to developments in Europe and the United States.