AGM Statement and Board Update
At the Annual General Meeting of William Hill PLC (LSE: WMH) (William Hill or the Group), held today at 11.00 am, the Chairman, Gareth Davis, made the following statement.
“It has been a milestone 12 months for William Hill. The Group delivered a strong organic performance with 2012 revenues up 12%, Operating profit1 up 20% and the full-year dividend per share up 17%. We also made significant strategic progress, most notably the acquisition of Sportingbet Australia and taking full control of William Hill Online. It was very pleasing, as a result of these developments, to see William Hill enter the FTSE100 on 1 May.
“The Board is pleased to announce today that Ralph Topping has indicated his desire to continue as Chief Executive until at least the end of 2015. At the time of announcing in June 2011 that we would be retaining Ralph’s services until at least the end of 2013, I indicated the critical importance of keeping him in the business given his extensive experience over 43 years with William Hill. I am delighted he plans to stay longer as I believe he remains uniquely qualified to lead the Group through this ongoing transformational period, particularly to maximise the opportunities in Australia and in digital.
“The Board is delighted that Ralph will remain with the Group for the coming years as we continue to manage the succession planning for the Chief Executive role. Our preference is always to look internally first for candidates and we are developing a cadre of talented senior management. At the same time, we are continuing to scan the external market to ensure we have the widest range of options open to us at the appropriate time."
Ralph Topping, Chief Executive, commented: "I am very pleased by the progress we have made at William Hill over the last five years and the value we have generated for shareholders. We now have significant opportunities to transform this business, with more of our revenues and profits than ever before coming from online, from mobile and from international territories. I am confident we have the management team in place to deliver further value and am delighted to continue to lead this team at such an exciting stage in William Hill’s growth and development.”
- Operating profit is defined as pre-exceptional profit before interest and tax, before the amortisation of specifically identified intangible assets recognised on acquisitions.
Gareth Davis, Chairman
Ralph Topping, Chief Executive
Lyndsay Wright, Director of IR
Tel: +44 (0) 20 8918 3614
Simon Sporborg / Sophie Brand / Oliver Hughes
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7404 5959