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Flutter shares hit record high on spin-off of US business FanDuel

Flutter shares hit record high on US spin-off: UK’s biggest gambling firm says it could float ‘small shareholding’ of FanDuel

Shares in the UK’s biggest gambling firm hit record highs yesterday as it looks at a possible stock market listing for part of its US business.

Flutter said it could float a ‘small shareholding’ of FanDuel – sending its stock up 6.8 per cent to value the company at almost £30billion, which means its value has tripled in the last 12 months.

The FTSE 100 firm, which owns the Paddy Power, Skybet and Betfair brands, has benefited from the pandemic as millions of customers turned to online gambling.

Flutter, which owns the Paddypower, Skybet and Betfair brands, has benefited from the pandemic as millions of customers turned to online gambling

Flutter first invested in FanDuel, which started out as a fantasy sports website, in 2018 and spent £3.2billion last December to increase its stake from 57.8 per cent to 95 per cent.

A spokesman said: ‘Flutter regularly evaluates its organisational and capital structure to assess how best to position itself to deliver upon the group’s strategy. 

Options including the listing in the US of a small shareholding in FanDuel are being considered but no decision has been made at this time.’

Flutter raked in £12million a day last year, equivalent to £4.4billion in global revenues, helping to double its earnings.

The company, based in Dublin but listed in London, is leading the charge into the rapidly growing US betting market, which was opened up by a landmark Supreme Court ruling in 2018. 

The decision sparked a gold rush with the big four UK firms, which are world leaders in online betting technology, pushing for a slice of the market.

Flutter said it has a 40 per cent share of the US sports betting market and £790million in gross gambling revenue over the last year in the US. 

FanDuel alone reported £694million in revenues in 2020. Votes in 19 states are due this year on whether to legalise gambling.

Flutter also has a fifth of the market in gaming, which includes bingo, slots and casino games. 

The total market in the US is expected to exceed £14billion by 2025, making it considerably larger than the current betting and gaming market in the UK.

In 2020 customers in the United States added £70million to Flutters earnings, which it said ‘demonstrated the substantial US earnings power’.

Last week it revealed that chief executive Peter Jackson has seen his pay packet more than triple in 2020 to £7.5million thanks to its success.