William Hill (WMH)

Sector:

Tourism and Leisure Services

Index:

FTSE 250

178.25p
   
  • Change Today:
    -1.15p
  • 52 Week High: 205.20
  • 52 Week Low: 132.30
  • Currency: UK Pounds
  • Shares Issued: 874.15m
  • Volume: 2,138,953
  • Market Cap: £1,558.17m
  • RiskGrade: 183

William Hill to close 700 betting shops; 4,500 jobs at risk

By Michele Maatouk

Date: Thursday 04 Jul 2019

LONDON (ShareCast) - (Sharecast News) - William Hill has confirmed plans to close 700 betting shops, putting 4,500 jobs at risk.
The company said on Thursday that it has seen a "significant" drop in gaming machine revenues since the government reduced the maximum stake on fixed-odd betting terminals (FOBTs) to £2 in April.

The bookmaker, which has entered into a consultation process with its staff, said "a large number of redundancies" is expected.

"The group will look to apply voluntary redundancy and redeployment measures extensively and will be providing support to all colleagues throughout the process.

"Subject to the outcome of the consultation process, shop closures are likely to begin before the end of the year."

On 1 April, the government introduced new rules to cut the maximum stake on FOBT machines to £2 from £100 in a bid to tackle gambling addiction.

In its half-year results back in August 2018, William Hill said that preliminary estimates suggested around 900 of its betting shops could become loss-making as a result of the new rules. It had already warned in May that the £2 staking limit was likely to reduce retail gaming revenues by around 35% to 45% and operating profit, after mitigation, by around £70m to £100m.

In its full-year results released in March, the company said it swung to a statutory pre-tax loss of £721m from a profit of £146m the year before. This included a non-cash writedown of £882.8m related to the UK retail business due to the changes to fixed odds betting.

Betting shop workers union, Community, said news of the store closures and job losses was "devastating".

Operations director Tom Blenkinsop said: "We will be advising our members through the consultation process.

"William Hill should immediately engage with Community, so that their staff get additional support and advice during the consultation and all measures can be taken to minimise redundancies and find alternatives.

"The Government also has a role to play and must look at what support they can offer to workers whose jobs are threatened as a consequence of changes to the law around FOBTs.

"Betting shops provide an important source of local employment and many of our members have served the company loyally for years. Workers don't deserve to be the victims of the changes happening in the industry as a result of either government policy or the significant shift towards online gambling."

The Association of British Bookmakers cautioned in March that the changes would have "a significant impact" on the number of shops and people employed in the industry.

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Note 1: Prices and trades are provided by Digital Look Corporate Solutions and are delayed by at least 15 minutes.

Note 2: RiskGrade figures are provided by RiskMetrics.

 

William Hill Market Data

Currency UK Pounds
Share Price 178.25p
Change Today -1.15p
% Change -0.64 %
52 Week High 205.20
52 Week Low 132.30
Volume 2,138,953
Shares Issued 874.15m
Market Cap £1,558.17m
RiskGrade 183

William Hill Star Ratings

Compare performance with the sector and the market.
more star ratings
Key: vs Market vs Sector
Value
39.84% above the market average39.84% above the market average39.84% above the market average39.84% above the market average39.84% above the market average
39.13% above the sector average39.13% above the sector average39.13% above the sector average39.13% above the sector average39.13% above the sector average
Price Trend
15.61% below the market average15.61% below the market average15.61% below the market average15.61% below the market average15.61% below the market average
21.13% below the sector average21.13% below the sector average21.13% below the sector average21.13% below the sector average21.13% below the sector average
Income
77.37% above the market average77.37% above the market average77.37% above the market average77.37% above the market average77.37% above the market average
61.90% above the sector average61.90% above the sector average61.90% above the sector average61.90% above the sector average61.90% above the sector average
Growth
82.29% below the market average82.29% below the market average82.29% below the market average82.29% below the market average82.29% below the market average
77.14% below the sector average77.14% below the sector average77.14% below the sector average77.14% below the sector average77.14% below the sector average

What The Brokers Say

Strong Buy 8
Buy 0
Neutral 10
Sell 0
Strong Sell 0
Total 18
buy
Broker recommendations should not be taken as investment advice, and are provided by the authorised brokers listed on this page.

William Hill Dividends

  Latest Previous
  Interim Final
Ex-Div 24-Oct-19 25-Apr-19
Paid 28-Nov-19 06-Jun-19
Amount 2.66p 7.74p

Trades for 21-Jan-2020

Time Volume / Share Price
16:35 697,824 @ 178.25p
16:29 1,801 @ 177.70p
16:29 2,163 @ 177.70p
16:29 731 @ 177.80p
16:29 260 @ 177.80p

William Hill Key Personnel

CFO Ruth Prior
Chair Roger Devlin
CEO Ulrik Bengtsson

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