Stock betting firm Plus500 says it’s on course to do better than forecast this year. That’s despite a huge issue with the regulator that froze its business in May and tanked its share price.
Plus500 put out a relatively solid half-year on Thursday, revealling:
- Revenues up 20% to $US127 million (£81.9 million);
- Earnings before tax, interest and depreciation down 23% to $US55.5 million (£35.8 million);
- Net profit down 25% to $US40.6 million (£26.2 million);
- Active customer number increased by 39% to 93,267;
- New customers up 60% to 52,217.
The fall in earnings and profit were expected after the regulatory nightmare Plus500 had back in May.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) told it to stop trading and re-verify every customer’s identity. That followed a review that found Plus500’s anti-money laundering checks weren’t up to scratch.
Israeli-headquartered Plus500 lets ordinary people make risky, leveraged bets on stocks and currencies through something called a contract for difference (CFD).
It’s pretty incredible, then, that Plus500 managed to grow revenue then while its UK business was frozen and it was scrambling to repair it (it also has operations across Europe and Australia, but the UK is one of its biggest markets).
CEO Gal Haber also treated investors to a revenue upgrade today, saying: “Looking ahead, Q3 has started strongly, and as a result the Board now expects revenues to be ahead of 2014 and previous market expectations.”
After Plus500’s share price went into free fall, Playtech swooped in with a low-ball bid for the company. The fellow Israeli company’s offer is almost half the £862 million ($US1.3 billion) Plus500 was worth before the crisis blew up, but the board approved it and it went through. Plus500 says today it expects that deal to complete by the end of September.
Playtech, which makes software for gambling and betting companies, also released its half-year figures on Thursday. Here are the highlights:
- Revenue up 33% to €286 million (£209 million, $US324 million);
- Profit up 19% to €115 million (£84.2 million, $US130.3 million).
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.