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Ladbrokes Fails to Conquer Online Gambling

UK bookmaker Ladbrokes is still having difficulties with its online betting operations. Last week they announced that the head of digital operations, Richard Ames, will be leaving after their profits from online betting fell by 50% in the first half of the year to just £15m.

The results from the first half of this year show that Ladbrokes is still struggling to run a successful online business.

Richard Glynn, the Chief Executive, has said that there is “disappointment” about their online operations and it is not surprising that Ames has left. However, it has been reported that he will receive more than £500,000 compensation.

Ladbrokes’ first half operating profits were £107m but just one seventh of this came from online gambling. Rival bookmakers Paddy Power makes more than four fifths of its profits from online and telephone betting. The future of Ladbrokes is dependent on better results from online gambling as it continues to grow in popularity. The ousting of Ames is a statement that Ladbrokes thinks its own online technology, which has cost £50m to develop, has failed.

However, Glynn has said that the rest of the business is in better condition than it has been since he arrived in April 2010. Overall operating profits have risen 11% to £106.9 million and revenues are up 8% to £529 million. Glynn believes that they will eventually turn around their online operations and prove critics wrong in a statement he said that when he used to play rugby he would “judge the result at the end of the match, not halfway through.”

Ladbrokes are undergoing a change in their management which Glynn says will lead to a “flatter, more focused” structure. The Director of IT, Mark Grimes, has joined the executive committee and Ladbrokes will now be investing a further £50 million over the next two years in order to improve their online sector.

OCA News Editor