Bookmaker William Hill forecasts annual profit above estimates

BoyleSports has acquired 33 more stores in the north

BoyleSports has acquired 33 more stores in the north

William Hill said they "look forward" to working with BoyleSports.

Having served central London bookmaker William Hill as its chief financial officer (CFO) since October 2017, Ruth Prior will step down from her role to join privately held materials testing business Element Materials Technology, as CFO.

Operating profits for the year are estimated to have been between £143m ($186m) and £148m ($192m). Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. cut their target price on shares of William Hill from GBX 180 ($2.37) to GBX 170 ($2.24) and set a "neutral" rating on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, November 27th.

Company officials are satisfied with the "good progress" made in view of the challenging regulatory environment it has been operating in.

William Hill's retail business was hit heavily by the state cut, which prompted the company to flag the closure of 700 betting shops around the UK.

The "beat" was driven by the retail business which generated operating profits above internal forecasts of £50m to £70m due to "particularly favourable" sports results in December, which were above the long-term gross win margin range.

Experts said the £13.6bn merger of casino firms Eldorado and Caesars in the USA could open up further opportunities for United Kingdom bookies such as William Hill, which are hoping to break into the country's newly legalised sports betting market.

Overseas online revenue is expected to be "broadly flat" on a pro forma basis in the fourth quarter as sportsbook was weak but Sweden-based Mr Green drove a good performance in gaming.

In a trading update to investors, William Hill, parent of William Hill US, has cited strong progress towards break even status in the American sports betting sector, with expected adjusted profits for 2019 of between $185.6m and $192m for the whole group. As a result, it expects to break even for the USA business overall in 2019.

William Hill is one of the few operators not burning cash while trying to establish market share in the USA thanks to the strength of its existing business in Nevada and its speed to market with retail options.

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