Profits on the up at Paddy Power Betfair

Photo credit: David Davies/PA Wire.Photo credit: David Davies/PA Wire.
Photo credit: David Davies/PA Wire.
Bookmaker Paddy Power Betfair reported a jump in profits for the first half of the year as the firm begins to benefit from its restructure.

The company, born out of a merger between Paddy Power and Betfair, saw revenue rise 18 per cent to £759m and underlying profits jump to £136.4m in the period

The firm said it performed well at events such as Cheltenham, the Grand National and Euro 2016.

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Paddy Power Betfair added that sales across the US and Australia grew by 16 per cent and 17 per cent respectively during the period. The group said it will bag a £65m boost from cost synergies related to the merger in 2017, a year earlier than expected.

However, the firm was also stung by costs relating to the merger, which resulted in a bottom line loss for the six months to June 30.

Chief executive Breon Corcoran said: “Paddy Power Betfair has sustained good momentum through a period of considerable change. The restructuring is now largely complete and the merger synergies are being delivered ahead of schedule.

“While our industry remains highly competitive and is exposed to the prevailing economic and regulatory environments, our strong market positions, increased scale and enhanced capabilities position us well for sustainable, profitable growth.”

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Paddy Power Betfair also announced that Stewart Kenny has decided to step down from his role as non-executive director on the board.

Mr Kenny co-founded Paddy Power in 1988 and was group chief executive until 2002 when he retired from his executive role.

He was chairman from 2002 to 2003 and has remained on the board as a non-executive director for the past 13 years.

Gary McGann, chairman of Paddy Power Betfair, said: “After 40 years in bookmaking and 28 years’ involvement with this business, Stewart has an enviable record in the industry and leaves a great legacy.

“He was instrumental in creating a highly successful international business from a small domestically-focussed retail operation at inception.”