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888 inks three market access deals in the US

The London-listed operator 888 has announced three market access deals for online gambling in the US.

In a trading update, the online gambling operator 888 announced three market access deals for online sports betting, casino gambling and poker in the US.

This will bring the total number of states where 888 is operational to six.

888 set to launch operations in three new states

The London-listed operator has now secured entry into Colorado, Indiana and Iowa and outlined plans to launch its 888Sport brand in these states next year.

888 will launch in Colorado under Grande Casino’s licence, which is based in Cripple Creek, in Iowa under Catfish Bend Casinos II LLC’s licence and in Indiana via a partnership the Caesars-owned Harrah’s Hoosier Park.

In the announcement, the operator described these deals as “ milestones in 888’s growth strategy in the developing US online gaming market.”

Itai Pazner, CEO of 888, said: “We are delighted to sign these agreements with three great partners – the Colorado Grande Casino, Catfish Bend Casino II LLC, and Harrah’s Hoosier Park – that will enable 888 to bring its first-class online sportsbook to bettors in Colorado, Iowa and Indiana. The US online betting and gaming market has huge growth potential, and we continue to build a strong platform for growth across both our B2B and B2C operations.”

Prior to the agreements, 888 had a presence in Delaware, New Jersey and Nevada.

On the deals, Yaniv Sherman, SVP Head of Commercial Development at 888 said: “Expanding into these three states represents another major milestone in our ongoing growth across the regulated U.S. online gaming market. We have deployed our proprietary technology in the U.S., and our exciting pipeline of new products will deliver industry-leading propositions to customers across both our B2B and B2C operations. We continue to appraise strategic partnerships that will provide additional brand-building and market access opportunities for 888 across the U.S. market in the near future.”

888’s trading update

In addition to the announcement of the market access deals, 888 provided a trading update where it highlighted it has continued to deliver strong performance during the second half of the fiscal year.

The operator said its performance reflects the groups level of customer acquisition during 2019 and 2020, the benefit from a shift in consumer behaviour to online services, new product launches and its vigilance when it comes to responsible gambling.

888’s board expects revenue for the full year to grow by approximately 45% on 2019’s figure while earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) are expected to be approximately 18.5%, consistent with the margin achieved in the first half of the year.

Pazner added: “We are pleased with 888’s trading during the second half of 2020. This performance continues to reflect strong FTD trends in line with the Group’s recreational customer focus as well as the structural shift towards online services being seen across several consumer-facing industries. 

“We have continued to prioritise safe gambling and recognise the impact of COVID-19 on the lives of 888’s customers across global markets. 888 continues to invest in protecting customers and has again increased the volume of interactions with customers initiated by 888’s safer gambling team in order to help prevent gambling-related harm. Underpinned by 888’s core strengths as a responsible operator with outstanding technology, the Group remains well-positioned to deliver further strategic progress.”

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