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Better Collective provides extraordinary business update due to COVID-19 situation

George Miller

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Better Collective provides extraordinary business update due to COVID-19 situation
Reading Time: 4 minutes

 

Following the postponement of several sports events in many countries including the UEFA EURO 2020 due to the outbreak of COVID-19, the sports betting media group, Better Collective, provides an extraordinary business update with the following highlights:

  • Until mid March, Better Collective’s business has shown strong performance and has not been notably affected by postponements of sports events caused by the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • In the last couple of days, major sports events have been postponed, leading to reduced sports betting activity to approximately half of normal levels. The esports and casino business have not been affected.
  • The financial targets for 2020 remain unchanged until further, given certain assumptions.
  • Better Collective’s business model and strong balance sheet allows for a high degree of flexibility in this changing environment.

Current business performance:
Better Collective’s business has not been notably affected by COVID-19 until mid March 2019, despite some sports events having been played without a physical audience and some events having been cancelled.

For Better Collective, February 2020 revenue ended in line with expectations with revenue of 6,9 mEUR corresponding to a growth of 27% (of which 13% was organic growth). Revenue in January and February 2020 combined amounts to 14,1 mEUR corresponding to a growth of 37% (of which 21% was organic growth). Measured on gross gaming activity in revenue share accounts, player activity in February was all time high.

Postponement of sports events
From mid March, almost all major sports events have been postponed. This includes the EURO 2020, as announced by The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA), which is postponed to 2021.  In the days after the almost full halt of all major sports events globally, sports betting activity has been reduced to approximately half of normal activity, whereas activities in esports and casino remain unchanged.

Following the postponement of several major sports events, Better Collective expects that some of the revenue, which would normally materialize in the first half of 2020, will either be lost or postponed until later in 2020 or to 2021, depending on the new scheduling of events.

Based upon the current activity level, Better Collective estimates that the postponement of EURO 2020 will imply an isolated revenue postponement of 2-4 mEUR from 2020 to 2021, whereas other cancellations/postponements may have a similar negative effect, in particular in the US, where the business is mostly exposed to the major sports leagues.

Financial targets:

The financial targets for 2020 remain unchanged (double-digit organic growth and total growth of >30%, operating margin (EBITA) >40% and Net Interest Bearing Debt/ EBITDA <2,5) until further, given the following assumptions:

  • Reduced revenue in 2020 from EURO 2020, postponed to 2021, is estimated at 2-4 mEUR.
  • Reduced revenue in 2020 from other postponed sports events is estimated at 4-6 mEUR.
  • Esports (HLTV) and casino business continue to perform at regular levels.
  • The estimated effect of reduced sports betting of a total 6-10 mEUR is based on the assumption that all major sports events, other than EURO 2020, will be back to a normal activity level in the second half of 2020.
  • Costs are maintained at current levels and thus lower than budgeted for the full year, offsetting some of the reduced revenue.

Better Collective will on an ongoing basis evaluate the development of the business and potentially take measures to protect the business and cash flow if revenue will be impacted significantly by postponed sports events.

Flexible business model and strong balance sheet:
Better Collective operates in an online business that allows for a high degree of flexibility as operation is highly scalable and can take place almost anywhere. This allows the company to continue operations as usual while giving priority to the health and safety of the employees. Furthermore, the historical business model has to a high degree been based upon revenue share, where the large databases of players continue to generate revenue as long as betting events take place, thereby providing recurring revenue. In past periods with low activity in the absence of  major sports events, there is normally still betting activity, i.e. on lower profiled sports events, virtual games, esports, casino. Therefore it can be expected that even though major sports events are not happening, there will still be betting activity.

Better Collective has a strong balance sheet and financing position. The net cash position was almost neutral at the end of February 2020, with a net bank debt (cash minus bank debt) of minus 13,9 mEUR after including upfront payment of approximately 24 mEUR in connection with the acquisition of HLTV.org ApS (esports) at the end of February. Cash and un-utilised committed bank credit facilities stood at 70 mEUR end of February 2020.

Jesper Søgaard, CEO of Better Collective, says:
“The COVID-19 has in many instances created an unprecedented situation for societies across the world. Just as many other companies, Better Collective will expectedly also be affected by the COVID-19, especially following the postponement of major sports events such as the EURO 2020. Nothing is more important than the health and safety of people and we look forward to the return of the sports we all enjoy, including a safe and exciting EURO 2021. Though visibility is currently limited, we stay optimistic that normal sports betting activity levels will be restored why our guidance remains unchanged.”

About Better Collective:

Better Collective’s vision is to empower iGamers through transparency and technology – this is what has made them the world’s leading developer of digital platforms for betting tips, bookmaker information and iGaming communities. Better Collective’s portfolio includes a range of websites and products, among other bettingexpert.com, the trusted home of tips from expert tipsters and in depth betting theory. Better Collective is headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark, and listed on Nasdaq Stockholm (BETCO).

Industry News

Stakelogic Enters into Partnership with Iforium

Niji Narayan

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Stakelogic Enters into Partnership with Iforium
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Online slot developer Stakelogic has entered into a deal that will see its entire portfolio of games made available via Iforium’s Gameflex platform.

The partnership provides Stakelogic with rapid distribution into additional regulated markets such as the UK, Spain and Romania, allowing the developer to showcase its incredible portfolio of classic slots and video slots to more operators.

For Iforium, the partnership allows it to add quality, proven content to its game portfolio including hugely popular Stakelogic titles such as Flappers, The Expendables Megaways and just-launched games Runner Runner Megaways and Book of Cleopatra Super Stake.

“We are thrilled to have integrated our full suite of games with Iforium and to be able to leverage its incredible network of operator partners in core regulated markets around the world. Our games are proving to be incredibly popular with players in Europe and other international jurisdictions and as we continue to design and develop even more classic and video slots, we look forward to taking advantage of the increased exposure Iforium provides,” Stephan van den Oetelaar, CEO of Stakelogic, said.

“One of the reasons why so many tier one operators work with Iforium is our unrivalled portfolio of top-quality online slots and casino content. In that regard, Stakelogic is a great addition, bringing with it a suite of chart-topping games. We believe operators in regulated markets around the world will leap at the chance to add Stakelogic titles to their lobbies, allowing them to deliver the best possible experience to their players and to stand out from their rivals,” Phil Parry, CEO of Iforium, said.

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Industry News

BetConstruct Launches its Latest Live Casino Game “Switch BlackJack”

Niji Narayan

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BetConstruct Launches its Latest Live Casino Game “Switch BlackJack”
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BetConstruct has launched its latest live casino game Switch BlackJack. Since the beginning of the summer, this is the fourth major gaming release for BetConstruct’s Live Casino.

Switch BlackJack tables feature three playing sits per game and two boxes to bet on simultaneously with an option to switch combinations. High-odds side bets for more experienced players are an essential element to the game and additional revenue source.

Between three players per table and two betting boxes per individual, there is a higher level of retention for operators with Switch BlackJack. Regardless of the player experience, this new game with an alternative take on the main concept of BlackJack has a full potential of being more than a one-time thrill.

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Industry News

Greek Super League Announces Interwetten as its Gold Sponsor

Niji Narayan

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Greek Super League Announces Interwetten as its Gold Sponsor
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The Greek Super League has announced Malta-headquartered sports betting operator Interwetten as its gold sponsor for the next three years, starting with the 2020-2021 season.

The sponsorship represents an evolution of the partnership formed last year, where Interwetten joined the league as its official sports betting partner for the 2019-2020 season.

“We are very pleased that the Super League’s cooperation with Interwetten is now entering a new era, as it is officially the Gold Sponsor of the Super League,” Leonidas Boutsikaris, president of the Super League, said.

He described Interwetten’s “vote of confidence” in the Super League as a key driver of progress and development of football locally, and indicating that a broader strategy to attract more investment and sponsorship was succeeding.

Dominik Beier, representative for Interwetten’s board of directors, described Greece as a very important market for the operator.

“So we want to continue to invest in sports here and expand our position. The naming rights for the Super League championship is the most important sports deal that exists in Greece. The Super League opens up a wealth of opportunities for us, both for communication and action, across the country and throughout the year,” he said.

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