Playtech has highlighted the strong performance of its live casino offering as well as positive growth across both North America and LatAm, offsetting the hurdles posed by the COVID-19 pandemic across multiple jurisdictions.

Publishing its interim trading results, the group recorded profits of €401.9m, in comparison to a loss of €22.1m in H1 2020, although total group revenue declined by 4 per cent to €457.4m (H1 2020: €476.7m).

Additionally, adjusted EBITDA stood at €124.1m (2020: €109.5m), representing an increase of 13 per cent, with the company describing the overall results as ‘in line with expectations at the start of the year’.

Identifying ‘very strong growth’ for its live casino operations, the group experienced its most significant expansion in the US and Latin America, with revenue from the two continents increasing by 106 per cent to €46.4m (H1 2020: €22.9m).

Notable developments included the expansion of the Caliente brand in Mexico, in addition to the company solidifying its LatAm foothold via launches in Costa Rica and Panama and a ‘crowing contribution’ in Colombia via Wplay.

Meanwhile, in the US the firm underscored its new New Jersey-based partnerships with Scientific Games and Novamatic as well as existing arrangements with bet365 and BetMGM in the state, in addition to the commencement of operations in Michigan through Parx Casino.

 Playtech CEO Mor Weizer remarked: “I am delighted by our strong strategic and operational progress to date in 2021, despite the ongoing challenges posed by the pandemic.

“These results demonstrate the quality of our technology and products, the significant progress made against our strategic priorities, and wider momentum across Playtech’s operations.”

Diversification of the firm’s B2B operations was also identified as a key growth driver, with the company adding over 50 brands to its SaaS offering – bringing the total to 250 brands since launch – with revenue growth for this division standing at 128 per cent. Overall revenue growth of 16 per cent was recorded for the B2B vertical, taking the total figure to  €267.2m (H1 2020: €229.7m).

In Europe, Italy proved to be the biggest success story for Playtech, with the company’s B2C sports betting and retail Snaitech subsidiary performing well in the former with revenue growth of 95% to €123.4m and Adjusted EBITDA growth of 118 per cent to €72.6m.

Snaitech’s success was underpinned by a €20m sell-off of surplus land in July, whilst outside of Italy a strategic agreement regarding software and services was signed with Holland Casino.

However, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the possibility of further lockdowns across different jurisdictions Playtech remains uncertain about the future of the macroeconomic outlook, although the group has reported a ‘strong start’ to H2 operations in July and August. 

Lastly, the group also confirmed that it remains in talks with Gopher regarding the sale of its Finalto subsidiary, having secured the approval of its shareholders last month.

“Looking forward, given the strong H1 performance, the momentum in the business and the easing of lockdown restrictions, we are confident of Playtech’s prospects for the remainder of 2021 and beyond,” Weizer concluded.