Revenues in healthy way at Betfair

ONLINE betting company Betfair yesterday reported revenue growth of 27 per cent in the year to 30 April, and played down reports that it is planning to raise cash through an initial public offering (IPO).<br /><br />Just a day after rival William Hill issued a profit warning, Betfair posted revenues of &pound;303m, driven by international expansion and consumers shifting to on-line betting.<br /><br />The firm added that revenues have doubled over a period of three years, while its base of active customers had grown 150 per cent to 652,000.<br /><br />&ldquo;We have no plans for an IPO,&rdquo; said Betfair chief executive David Yu, adding that strong cash generation has left the firm with &pound;133m in cash and no debt.<br /><br />&ldquo;We have a very patient shareholder base and all of our focus is on growing the business.&rdquo;<br /><br />Betfair&rsquo;s chief financial officer Stephen Morana added that further acquisitions are not out of the question, though appropriate targets are &ldquo;few and far between&rdquo;.<br /><br />International customers contributed 49 per cent of revenues, driven by a regulatory easing in Australia and the acquisition of US wagering channel TVG Network.<br /><br />Revenue from its sports betting business grew by 20 per cent, but Yu also cited an increase in numbers of bets on politics and reality TV shows.