Lisa Cheban | 25 September, 2023 13:04 | Last update on: 25 September, 2023 13:04
Entain, the troubled operator of leading online sports betting brands in Australia, has announced plans to scrap more than 50 local positions. The Ladbrokes and Coral bookmaking brand owner is trying to adjust to lower discretionary expenditure. As part of its cost-cutting directive, the London Stock-listed betting giant has also suspended any future hiring plans.
According to anonymous insiders at the company, headcount cutbacks and cost-cutting have reportedly taken place across the entire firm. The company operates in the United Kingdom, Europe, Asia, and South America.
The Financial Review says that over 80 local jobs might have been lost at the company, with other reports saying the figure is close to 60. In addition, the job losses cut across the company’s numerous departments, including digital, technology, marketing, and customer service.
“Entain has enjoyed a rapid period of growth in Australia, and like any major technology-led company, we continue to review business operations and tweak our structures to set us up for the next stage of growth. Unfortunately, this has led to a small number of redundancies across a range of business units,” an Entain representative told the Financial Review.
Ladbrokes launched its operations in Australia in 2013 before rapidly expanding in the last two years because of increased consumer spending. The company had 400 employees during that time, doubling the figure since then.
Entain’s Numerous Challenges in the Past Year
The news about employee redundancy won’t surprise many followers of the company. It’s an open secret that Entain has recently been facing multiple challenges in Australia and the United Kingdom.
In September last year, the Australian anti-money laundering commission started an inquiry into the global gambling juggernaut regarding compliance with anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism funding regulations. The probe could take up to two years to complete, resulting in a maximum fine of $22 million.
Things are even thicker for Entain in the United Kingdom. The United Kingdom’s tax body, HMRC, launched a probe in 2019 regarding potential corporate offending by a Turkish betting business owned by Entain between 2011 and 2017. GVC is accused of lacking appropriate measures to prevent its customers from participating in bribery practices that benefit the company.
According to the Guardian, the operator has already set aside more than £500 to settle investigations with UK authorities over the potential bribery claims. The company confirmed that negotiations with the Crown Prosecution Service had progressed well, and a resolution could be possible to the probe by the HM Revenue and Customs.
As a result of its recent struggles, Entain’s shares have dropped sharply. The company’s stock market shares fell by 2.2%, with all the focus directed at how it will handle the current situation.