Belfast Telegraph

Company Report: Northwest Bookmakers


By John Simpson

Northwest Bookmakers is a subsidiary of Ladbroke Holdings (NI) which is, in turn, a subsidiary of the parent company Ladbroke plc. 

In 2007, this business brought together the betting businesses formerly owned by Eastwoods and McCartans.

In the last year the parent company has agreed a deal for the business to be taken over by GVC Holdings and Ladbrokes Coral Group for which formal regulatory approval was sought.

The financial review of Northwest Bookmakers is heavily influenced by both the treatment of the intangible assets (attributed to the trading licences) and recent decisions on the appropriate economic life of these assets. 

The group now amortises the licences over 15 years rather than the earlier decision which was that the licences had indefinite lives.

The trading results in 2014 and 2016 include a provision for the impairment of intangible assets of £43.8m in 2014 and £32.2m in 2016. 

These impairments led to a net loss in pre-tax profits and also left the net equity of shareholders’ funds at a negative figure.

Operating profits at £6.3m in 2016 have remained significant although in recent years have tended to fall compared to £7.9m in 2014.

Employment in this Northern Ireland business has averaged 361 people in 2016.  This compares with employment of 457 people in 2010.

Belfast Telegraph

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