Is this a profits warning in disguise? Aus has deteriorated from last , awful, notification so we could be looking at a massive write off. If this has also trashed Bet365 figures then I suppose that there might be merger speculation. Everything else looks OK , but the devil will be in the detail. Everyone knew about favourable results from previous advises to market from other gambling companies.
Will need a lot of clarification. WMH top Aus, Tom Waterhouse, was not exactly overjoyed when CrownBet joined several bookies campaigning to ban credit betting in an attempt to boost their companies' reputations with regulators. Even so, one possible benefit would be a combined lottery.
silchester international investors ,London based investment co , now owns 5% of WMH .they specialize in turn around co's .... other big stakes they have include morrisons & pearsons . we await October to see if the damage to come is bearable or not
"High street bookie LSE:WMH:William Hill shares have been short of backers in recent months, not least due to fears over a looming regulatory crackdown on gaming machines.These fixed odds betting terminals (FOBT) are such a major revenue stream ..."
The Investec profits crash never materialised. Credit doing OK. Most other pieces of news are shocking. Assets being sold at less than book value would indicate there will be a nasty shock down the line. Retail is awful - they have had a free run at LadCor and Betfred during their rights disputes, but profits are down. Australia profits are reduced to almost zero, so we're not covering interest on loans. EPS down but div up - Why? Much is being made of the £40M savings, possibly being made by being the worst major employer in the UK, but little about the increase in "management" costs. What has happened to all their expensive "projects" such as Old Street and US lotteries ? Have they just stopped ?
The only good news is that there is little disastrous news which presently could sink the SP, so the recent sell-off looks overdone. Unlike a turkey that is being fattened for sale within the next few months.
Did I miss the announcement that our chairman will be replaced this year ? If it was made in February then was it it wise to subsequently announce his choices of CEO and COO ?
According to the Telegraph it's William Hill.
Sports Direct don't even make the top ten. Shame on our board and their bonuses over the last two years whilst destroying staff moral. I asked about this at the AGM three years ago and got all kinds of nonsense about staff never being forced to work alone. Or lacking support if there is a problem but no one is "available". Or being forced to evict someone twice their weight who is trying to trash a FOBT. All the statements made by the then CEO and chairman turned out not to be true.
Sky Bet and Sun Bet are both part owned by Murdoch who has been trying to launch gambling websites off the back of other ventures for years. So far as I'm aware both use a platform provided by a WMH owned company - happy to be corrected! Sun Bets has been showing horrendous losses recently and so I think that it is doubtful that cash is going to be shelled out for any online proposition, especially as Sun Bets are linked to TABCORP and 80% of Sky Net was sold to CVC.
As for Israel, this sounds like a hangover from our connections with Teddy Sagi. Obviously something was left over after our rights issue and a week sniffing around Playtech. The new WMH CEO probably sees this as just another rationalisation and he has his own plans for digital...which leads to the drop in SP.
Investec have supported WMH for years so it probably cost the share price about 10% when their "advice" went from BUY to HOLD. Now they have gone SELL based on their information that profit margins in all 4 sectors will have shrunk drastically in the last quarter. I assume that there must be some evidence for them to make this statement although I don't understand why Betty Power and Ladbrokes are relatively unaffected. Something nasty might be coming out of the woodwork in the next week or so.
Anything below 250p means a 20% take over premium takes it to just 300p. Their own management seems to be completely rudderless for the modern era. I wonder if selling the Israel thing is something they are doing to clear the decks of unwanted peripheral stuff, to enable the suitor who may already be known, to come in with a cleaner slate to work with.
All bookmakers offering bets to Uk customers should be regulated by the gambling commission. If people use an entity that isn't then they do so at their own risk, if they are not willing to be regulated what says they will pay you your winnings?
For a long time the gambling commission has been seen as pretty toothless, light touch, low fines, think with new leadership it's slowly changing. Good to see them pushing through multi operator self exclusion and also launching investigations into breaches.
Still much needs changing. As I have said before consumers have no redress but the courts for breaches by operators on responsible gambling. You cannot complain directly to the regulator but must complain to the independent arbitrators. But they refuse to deal with responsible gambling issues! Disgrace.
Does anyone know what 888 are supposed to have done? For all the talk of giant fines I can't find anything that details what they are charged with. As for the GC, perhaps they could get back to suggesting ways that they can regulate Asian firms betting on British racing taking bets from British punters.
Interesting developments at 888 with regards to a review of their responsible gambling policies. Good to see the GC actually taking action, although why they don't deal with consumer complaints still on responsible gambling is beyond me? It leaves the consumer with no redress but the courts as IBAS refuse to deal with matters on responsible gambling.
Wait until the long heralded multi operator self exclusion comes in next year. I suspect that will have a dramatic impact as currently somebody who self excludes from one operator can just find another one they are not excluded from.
Nice of WMH to put their quarterly figures out using Sudoku format again. I really can't be bothered to work them out again, which I suppose was the object of the exercise. Does anyone know when we moved our digital office from Old Street in London to Krakow?
These aren't always interesting as they are normally qualified, be they good or bad, by statement saying that the board expects results to even out. This time Betty Power have had a mini-profit warning as other companies are taking on their headline grabbing loss leaders - They had 3 rivals paying first 8 in the recent Open golf. Lad/Cor blame High Street conditions for a 15% drop in retail takings. Nothing about their rights squabbles that have led to them not having any British live racing some days and missing big meetings on others. Perhaps they could start betting on how many people go elsewhere when the Lingfield race they have just bet on has no pictures or commentary. Anything other than a double figure drop in the quarterlies will be good news for WMH.
The recent MPs "report" into FOBTs , which proposed a £2 maximum stake, has been shown to be misleading by the Parliamentary Standards Committee according to The Guardian this evening. The MP's were far from impartial and somehow forgot to mention funding from casinos and amusement arcades which would benefit directly from the "recommendations" It apparently briefed the press that the report had some form of parliamentary authority. when in fact it had no such thing. It was the work of a PR company with vested interests,but that was never mentioned.
"William Hill (LSE:WMH)Many thanks for all the emails regarding yesterday's bankers commentary. We felt it needed saying. Thankfully, we were not the only folk irritated.At this part of the political shambles, the media will often resort to ..."
" WILLIAM HILL PLC (LSE:WMH) Many thanks for all the emails regarding yesterdays bankers commentary. We felt it needed said, thankfully we were not the only folk irritated. At this part of the political shambles, the media will often resort to ..."
If you are chairman of a company who has hand-picked a CEO which you have sacked, then followed it by announcing merger plans without mentioning it to your biggest shareholder what do you do? I know! Let's get rid of Graham Sharpe two years before he wanted to retire because he has only been promoting William Hill as an idiosyncratic brand with class and humour for 41 years. Even Gidiot and Camoron said that they looked at his political odds as being more reliable than their own polls and surveys. Far better to have Rabbi Savage to promote your company.
Racing Post think that earliest that legislation can be passed is October so that high street bookies will get at least an "extra" six months at the present levels. On the other hand, the additional uncertainty will put a brake on further consolidation that might have been expected during Summer. A further problem is that the new "levy", by which part of the profits are used to fund racing, might not go through in time. Presently The Levy Board is funding some of the prize money for races by drawing on reserves. Good news for Corals/Ladbrokes/Dones, who don't pay image rights either, but a bit unfair on WMH who do.
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