Corporate By William Hill PLC

Trading statement

Underlying trends remain encouraging, sector hit by December football and racing results

William Hill PLC (LSE: WMH) (William Hill or the Group) announces a trading statement for the unaudited 52 weeks ended 27 December 2016.

In the nine weeks since the trading statement on 14 November 2016, wagering trends continued in line with those previously reported. However, gross win margins were below expectations, in large part due to unfavourable football and horseracing results impacting the sector during December.

As a result, the Group’s full-year operating profit1 for 2016 was c£260m, at the bottom end of our guided £260-280m range.

Philip Bowcock, Interim CEO, commented: “Importantly, the improvements we saw in wagering in Online and Australia in the second half have continued in recent weeks. However, all four divisions saw customer-friendly results at the back end of the year, which translated into profits being c£20m below our prior expectations. With key underlying trends continuing to be positive, the recent run of sporting results have not changed our confidence in a better performance in 2017.”

The 2016 final results will be announced on Friday, 24 February 2017.

This announcement contains inside information. The person responsible for arranging the release of this announcement on behalf of William Hill is Philip Bowcock.

  1. Operating profit is defined as adjusted profit before interest and tax. Further detail on adjusted measures is provided in note 3 to the half-year report.

Enquiries

William Hill PLC

Philip Bowcock, Interim CEO
Mark Summerfield, Interim Chief Financial Officer
Lyndsay Wright, Director of IR
Ciaran O’Brien, Group Communications Director

 
 
Tel: +44 (0) 20 8918 3614
Tel: +44 (0) 20 8918 3607

Brunswick

Andrew Porter / Oliver Hughes / Chris Buscombe

Tel: +44 (0) 20 7404 5959

About William Hill PLC

William Hill, The Home of Betting, is one of the world's leading betting and gaming companies, employing around 16,000 people. Founded in 1934, it is one of the UK's largest bookmakers with around 2,370 licensed betting offices that provide betting opportunities on a wide range of sporting and non-sporting events, gaming on machines and numbers-based products including lotteries. The Group’s Online business (www.williamhill.com) is one of the world’s leading online betting and gaming businesses, providing customers with the opportunity to access William Hill's products online, through their smartphone or tablet, by telephone and by text services. William Hill US was established in June 2012 and provides land-based and mobile sports betting services in Nevada, and is the exclusive risk manager for the State of Delaware’s sports lottery. William Hill Australia is one of the largest online betting businesses in Australia after the Group acquired Sportingbet and tomwaterhouse.com in 2013. It offers sports betting products online, by telephone and via mobile devices. William Hill PLC is listed on the London Stock Exchange. The Group generates revenues of c£1.6bn a year.

Cautionary note regarding forward-looking statements

These results include statements that are, or may be deemed to be, "forward-looking statements". These forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology, including the terms "believes", "estimates", "anticipates", "expects", "intends", "plans", "goal", "target", "aim", "may", "will", "would", "could" or "should" or, in each case, their negative or other variations or comparable terminology. These forward-looking statements include all matters that are not historical facts. They appear in a number of places throughout these results and the information incorporated by reference into these results and include statements regarding the intentions, beliefs or current expectations of the directors, William Hill or the Group concerning, amongst other things, the results of operations, financial condition, liquidity, prospects, growth, strategies and dividend policy of William Hill and the industry in which it operates. By their nature, forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties because they relate to events and depend on circumstances that may or may not occur in the future and may be beyond William Hill's ability to control or predict. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance. The Group's actual results of operations, financial condition, liquidity, dividend policy and the development of the industry in which it operates may differ materially from the impression created by the forward-looking statements contained in these results and/or the information incorporated by reference into these results. In addition, even if the results of operations, financial condition, liquidity and dividend policy of the Group and the development of the industry in which it operates, are consistent with the forward-looking statements contained in these results and/or the information incorporated by reference into these results, those results or developments may not be indicative of results or developments in subsequent periods. Other than in accordance with its legal or regulatory obligations (including under the Market Abuse Regulation (596/2014), the Listing Rules, the Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules and the Prospectus Rules), William Hill does not undertake any obligation to update or revise publicly any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Download the Trading statement in PDF format