London betting startup Smarkets tripled its profits to £5.2 million last year as £1 billion was traded on its exchange

Jason Trost Smarkets
Smarkets CEO Jason Trost. WIRED

London betting startup Smarkets posted a strong set of results this week as the company prepares to embark on an expansion into the US.

Founded as a betting exchange in 2008, Smarkets announced in its annual report on Thursday that its profits more than tripled last year, from £316,000 in 2014 to £5.2 million.

Revenue at the company  — ranked 5th on this year’s Sunday Times Tech Track 100 — grew from £1.9 million to £10.4 million over the same time period, while more than £1 billion of trades were made on the exchange, which competes with Betfair Exchange.

Smarkets CEO Jason Trost said in a statement: “Smarkets is going from strength-to-strength with a momentum that is undeniable and I am confident of the success of our journey to deliver the unique customer experience that we strive for, and to establish ourselves in the top tier of technology companies.

“Our advanced trading platform has now handled over £3 billion worth of bets, and an increasing number of customers are benefiting from our best prices and industry-leading 2% flat commission.”

Speaking to Business Insider last month, Trost said Smarkets now has 25,000 customers, with 90% of those in the UK.

The entrepreneur sees a huge market for his company in the US and is currently scouting out an American city for Smarkets to open an office in, with Boston and Chicago among the contenders.

“I’m American so I always wanted to go back to America eventually for personal reasons and Brexit gave me the impetus to do it sooner rather than later,” he said. “I feel very strongly about Brexit. I think it’s one of the biggest mistakes this country has ever made . I think a catastrophe is putting it lightly.”

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