Stoke-on-Trent-based online gambling operator bet365 Group filed its annual report for the financial year 2021-22, posting a marginal increase in revenue but a nearly 95% slump in profit.
Stable Revenue, Spike in Administrative Expenses
For the 52 weeks ended March 27, 2022, bet365 Group registered revenue of £2.87 billion ($3.42 billion), with more than 99% of it generated from sports betting operations. Compared to the financial year ended March 27, 2021, when the group achieved a turnover of £2.82 billion ($3.38 billion), revenue growth was just under 2%.
A breakdown of sports and gaming revenue shows that sports betting revenue was down 2% while gaming revenue was up by 25%. According to the group, the decline in sports betting revenue was due to lower margins as the total amounts wagered and the number of active customers increased.
Direct costs of sales accounted for £496.34 million ($595.61 million), up 1.3% from £489.81 million ($587.77 million) in the previous comparable period, leading to gross operating profit for the financial year 2021-22 of £2.38 billion ($2.86 billion), up 2.1% to £2.33 billion ($2.79 billion) in financial 2020-21.
Administrative expenses jumped by 15.6% to £2.36 billion ($2.83 billion) as compared to £2.04 billion ($2.45 billion) in the previous comparable period, resulting in a nearly 95% drop in operating profit to £15.4 million ($18.5 million) from £285.5 million ($342.6 million) in the financial year 2020-21.
A further breakdown of administrative expenses shows that those attributed to Stoke FC and its facilities declined by 43.5% to £48.1 million ($57.7 million) while administrative expenses attributed to sports and gaming rose by 18% to £2.31 billion ($2.77 billion).
According to bet365 Group, the rise in expenses was due to its spending to support its expansion strategy in North America. During the financial year, bet365 expanded its payroll with more than 500 new employees, including managers, supervisors, operations, and service support staff, while operations staff related to the football club decreased slightly.
Denis Coates’ Annual Pay Decreased
The results also affected the annual pay of 55-year-old majority shareholder and co-chief executive officer of bet365 Group, Denis Coates, who received about £272 million ($326.4 million) during the financial year 2021-22, according to the registry filing.
In the previous financial year, the highest-paid director of the group and the UK’s richest woman banked nearly £300 million ($360 million) despite taking pay and dividend cuts.
Despite the drop, Coates, who received a £213.4 million ($256 million) salary and around £58 million ($69.6 million) in dividends is set to remain among the world’s best-paid executives.