Euro 2016 Soccer Surprises Give Boost to Sportingbet Owner GVC

  • Results ‘particularly favorable’ in first half of tournament
  • Cost-savings from the takeover are on target

Surprise results in the first half of the Euro 2016 soccer tournament gave a boost to second-quarter profitability at GVC Holdings Plc, the online bookmaker that more than doubled in size with the takeover this year of Digital Entertainment Plc.

Results were especially good in the early stages of the event in France, the Isle of Man-based company said Wednesday. That led to an above-average win margin of 9.9 percent on sports bets, up from 7.9 percent in the same period last year, it said.

“We are very encouraged by the positive performance to date,” Chief Executive Officer Kenny Alexander said in a statement. Savings from the acquisition are on target and Britain’s vote to leave the European Union will have little or no material impact on the company, he said.

About a third of games played in the opening round of the Euro 2016 tournament were draws, traditionally a favored outcome for bookmakers. Upset wins for long-shots such as Albania and Iceland also helped the win percentage for GVC, which owns the online wagering company Sportingbet. The tournament finished on Sunday when Portugal beat host France in extra time after the game finished tied in regulation time.

An 11 percent increase in net gaming revenue per day represented an acceleration from the first quarter, GVC said. Growth was 16 percent on a constant-currency basis.

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