William Hill, the largest bookmaker located in Great Britain, fell victim to their worst ever week of losses thanks to several football matches that finished in favor of sports betters. During the third week of January, the company lost £14m when several matches of the Premier League were won by punters’ favorites. As the football season draws to a close, the company has yet to be able to make up the losses.
Because players have the option to wager on mobile devices, accumulator wagers for football games are becoming more popular. During the first quarter of operations, mobile wagers by punters increased by 48% which made up 37% of the gaming revenues for the company. The company experienced such high losses in the month of January, the operating profits of William Hill fell down by £16m, which is a 19% decrease.
William Hill also faces higher operating costs after implementation of the UK Point of Consumption tax last December. Along with the new tax, there is also an increase on the duty for machine games. With both changes, William Hill now has a tax bill of £20m more for the first quarter.
James Henderson, the Chief Executive of William Hill, stated that after the weak January, the company saw an improvement in wagering trends for the remainder of the quarter. In February and March, wagering increased by 20%, with a 29% increase taking place during the Cheltenham festival.