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Online casino growth pushes revenue up 4.2% at OPAP in Q1

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OPAP said growth in its online casino business helped push revenue up 4.2% year-on-year to €549.7m (£467.5m/$593.3m), while the Greek gambling group also hailed further success within its lottery division.

Gross gaming revenue (GGR) in Q1 comfortably surpassed the €527.2m reported by OPAP in the same period last year. Net gaming revenue – GGR minus GGR contribution and other levies and duties – also increased 3.6% to €376.5m.

OPAP reported higher revenue across three of its five core segments in Q1. The highlight was growth in the online casino business, where revenue increased by 29.1% to €12.9m. Lottery and video lottery terminal (VLT) revenue was also higher, although OPAP did note declines in betting and instant and passives revenue.

On the whole, OPAP CEO Jan Karas is pleased with the results. He says the Q1 performance sets the group up for further growth throughout 2024.

“OPAP reported solid performance and organic growth in Q1, driven by our focus on enhancing our proposition and promoting innovation, with online recording strong activity and retail further solidifying its position,” Karas said.

“Looking ahead, we are focused on further upgrading our offering in every vertical and achieving progress in all pillars of OPAP’s Fast Forward business strategy.”

OPAP revels in online and lottery growth

Breaking down the Q1 figures, the stand-out result is revenue increasing 29.1% in the online casino segment to €70.9m. 

While this remains the lowest revenue source for OPAP, growth here was far higher than in any other segment. OPAP said the rise demonstrates strong growth on the back of higher player engagement levels and spending.

As for lottery, this remains OPAP’s main source of revenue. The €196.0m generated in Q1 is 3.9% ahead of the previous year, on the back of a revamp of the Lotto & Tzoker games late last year. In addition, OPAP said Eurojackpot, which launched in March this year, recorded a promising start and contributed incremental revenues.

Turning now to sports betting, revenue edged down 0.2% to €168.5m during the quarter. OPAP said despite the minor decline, this segment was supported by “healthy” growth of Pame Stoixima and solid contributions of Powerspin and virtuals.

Elsewhere, VLT revenue increased by 2.5% to €86.5m. This, OPAP says, maintains an upward trend, aided by ongoing machines optimisation and overall experience enhancement efforts.

Finally, revenue from the instant and passives business hit €27.8m, a drop of 9.0%. 

Net profit slips 4.0% in Q1

Looking at spending, total operating expenses were 18.6% higher during Q1 at €105.4m. This came amid increased costs across staffing, marketing and other operating costs.

Gaming revenue related expenses were also 15.8% higher at €25.6m, while depreciation and amortisation costs edged up. OPAP also noted €1.5m in net finance costs.

This left a pre-tax profit of €155.7m, down 3.4% year-on-year. OPAP paid €39.9m in income tax, meaning a Q1 net profit of €115.8m, a drop of 4.0% from €120.6m in 2023.

“Overall, we are well positioned for another successful year, with our focus now turning to the forthcoming major international sporting events,” Karas said.

“Finally, we remain committed to offering generous returns to our shareholders, as well as to creating value for our stakeholders and giving back to society.”

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