Kindred Group has continued to strengthen its grip on the US market during 2019, with the operator group anticipating ‘continued improvements’ to its Stateside expansion strategy in 2020.

During 2019, the firm had expanded its operations into both New Jersey and Pennsylvania with its Unibet brand.

Publishing its year end report for January – December 2019, Kindred revealed that its $6.5m investment in marketing initiatives have had a negative impact on the group’s underlying EBITDA, which is said to be ‘in line’ with expectations. 

Group CEO Henrik Tjärnström commented: “We also had the first full quarter of trading in the locally regulated US states of New Jersey and Pennsylvania. It was expected that the first months of trading in the US would be loss-making which is completely in line with Kindred’s experience of launches into other new markets. 

“This is logical as revenues grow from zero in response to our marketing investments, which includes initial marketing production costs ($2m) to go live that will be used longer term. 

“I am confident that we will see continued improvements in 2020 as our business in the US grows and our revenues increase. The US is the market with the largest long-term growth potential as regulation gathers pace, with the US online sports betting market estimated to be $13.6bn by 2023 (by the independent research firm Eilers & Krejcik Gaming).”

Gross revenues saw a drop during Q4 from $324m in 2018 down to $306m in 2019. However, this contrasts the full-year increase in revenues, with Kindred reporting figures of $1183.51m, up from $1176.77m in 2018. 

“Subject to change during the remainder of the quarter, but as an initial indication, the daily average Gross winnings revenue for the period 1 January to 9 February 2020 in GBP was 5% higher (10% in constant currency) than for the same period last year. In the US, gross winnings revenues grew by 90% in January 2020 compared to December 2019,” concluded Tjärnström.