Trump victory costs Paddy Power Betfair £40m

Donald Trump's shock election victory and unfavourable sporting results dented takings at bookmaker Paddy Power Betfair to the tune of £40 million in the fourth quarter.

The company, born out of a merger between Paddy Power and Betfair, said the controversial businessman’s successful US presidential bid in November cost it £5 million alone.

Like other bookmakers it also flagged a dire December when European football results, such as Chelsea’s string of victories - only ended by a 2-0 defeat to Tottenham in January - saw punters cash in on bookmakers’ woes.

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The group said in a trading update: “We estimate that the impact on group revenue from the customer-friendly results, before any benefit from the recycling of winnings, was approximately £40 million in the quarter.

“The impact on profitability of these results was partially offset by lower than expected marketing and staff costs.”

Nevertheless, group revenues in 2016 were up 18% to £1.5 billion, or 11% on a constant currency basis, and the group said that underlying earnings are expected to come in at the “mid-point” of the £390 million to £405 million range of expectations.

Revenue rose 10% to £388 million in the last three months of the year, but was flat on a constant currency basis.

The adverse sporting results saw revenue down 3% at Paddy Power Betfair’s online division in the fourth quarter, despite a 15% rise in sporting stakes.