Greek gambling group OPAP reported a year-on-year increase in revenue and net profit in its 2022 financial year, with growth across all core business divisions.
OPAP said the return of ordinary retail operations following the removal of all remaining pandemic-related restrictions, as well as expansion within its online business, helped drive growth across the group.
Chief executive Jan Karas also highlighted a record performance in the final quarter of the year, saying this rounded off a “remarkable” 12 months for OPAP and allowed the group to propose a generous shareholder return.
“OPAP reported a record-high quarterly performance in Q4, rounding off a remarkable year, with tangible progress in the implementation of our strategic objectives and increased activity across our channels,” Karas said. “EBITDA came in ahead of our latest outlook, with improved margins, while our leverage position further improved.
“Therefore, in line with our standing commitment to generating value for our shareholders, we are pleased to be proposing a generous total shareholder return for FY22 of €1.45 per share, including the already paid interim dividend of €0.30 per share.”
Revenue for the 12 months to 31 December amounted to €1.94bn (£1.70bn/$2.06bn), up 26.0% from €1.54bn in the previous year.
Breaking down this performance, the lottery business, which remained OPAP’s core sector, generated €709.5m in revenue, up 29.2% on 2021, reflecting strong trading versus 2021’s lockdowns and pandemic measures.
Betting revenue increased 15.8% to €603.7m on the back of continuous retail operation during 2022 and strong online contribution, while video lottery terminal (VLT) revenue was up 63.6% year-on-year to €318.4m.
Instant and passives revenue also climbed 21.5% to €107.9m, while online casino revenue edged up 7.9% to €199.5m.
Turning to spending and operating costs for the year were 13.5% higher at €365.1m while net finance expenses were €40.1, but such was the impact of the revenue increase that pre-tax profit more than doubled from €357.3m to €723.3m.
OPAP paid €127.2m in income tax, leaving an annual net profit of €592.3m, a 73.8% rise from €259.4m in the previous year. Excluding one-off items, net profit recurring was 73.8% higher at €436.0m.
In addition, EBITDA for the year climbed 33.7% to €736.0m.
Looking at the fourth quarter, revenue for the three months to 31 December amounted to €540.9m, up 5.5% from €498.5min the corresponding period in FY21.
Lottery revenue reached €193.9m, a year-on-year rise of 5.5%. OPAP said this was primarily down to high jackpot rollovers in Tzoker and a strong Kino performance during the quarter.
Betting revenue slipped 3.1% to €161.0m due to customer-friendly match results, though video lottery terminal (VLT) revenue increased 26.1% to €93.4m as a result of increased footfall and machine optimisation.
Instant and passives revenue climbed 15.3% to €31.9m, driven by both higher activity and playability in scratch and passives, while online casino revenue jumped 29.4% to €60.9m on the back of a growing customer base and product enhancements, as well as strong activity momentum brought by the World Cup.
In terms of spending, operating expenses were 22.2% higher at €113.9m and while OPAP did not publish financial costs, pre-tax or income tax figures, it did reveal that net profit for the quarter was 277.6% higher at €306.5m.
Excluding one-off costs, net profit recurring was 47.9% up to €127.5m, while EBITDA for Q4 increased 18.9% to €202.7m.
“Looking ahead, we will focus on showcasing our retail estate as local affordable entertainment destination,” Karas said. “We will also expand our online presence, through our ilottery proposition, which completes our online gaming arsenal.
“Last but not least, we remain committed on delivering sound financial results, while taking further steps towards realising our vision of offering best-in-class entertainment and giving back to society.”
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