Ladbrokes Cuts Forecasts To Reflect Q3 Profit Warning

UK bookmaker Ladbrokes has cut its yearly forecasts in order to reflect its poor performance in the third quarter of 2013.

A research report from UK bank Barclays reveled that the firm has cut it earning per share (EPS) full year forecast for 2013by 31% to 11p, a figure that is 8% below consensus.

The bookmaker has also reduced full year 2014 EPS by 24% to 14p, and full year 2015 EPS by 20% to 13.9p.

Ladbrokes also reflected the ongoing struggle within its online operations by forecasting that the division will contribute just 7% of earnings before interest and tax by the end of the year.

In contrast, competitor bookmaker William Hill’s online contribution has increased from 27% to 47% over the same period.

“Online turnaround continues to disappoint…and time is running out,” the report said. “Ladbrokes’ Online turnaround has been far slower than the market anticipated.

“The first major step required is a successful migration onto Playtech’s IMS back office system for the Sportsbook in Q1 2014.

“Secondly, the migration to the IMS back office system for gaming in Q2 2014 risks customer churn during the key World Cup 2014 trading period.

“While Playtech’s track record is exceptional, we believe the market requires further evidence that Ladbrokes’ recently revised timelines are on track.

“Any further delays could lead to a major de-rating of the shares, in our view.”

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