April 16, 2021 at 02:04AM

London-listed international gaming platform Entain posted strong first-quarter 2021 revenues for its digital gambling operations, up by one-third, despite the pandemic lockdowns that shuttered its brick-and-mortar locations on high street.

Entain’s CEO Jette Nygaard-Andersen said that the company has made “excellent progress” in meeting strategic goals, per a press release on Thursday (April 15). She pointed to the “hard work and dedication” of Entain’s workforce of 22,500 and added that she is “delighted that they will now have the opportunity to share in the future success” of the company through its ShareSave program.

The gambling technology platform is behind several betting brands — bwin, Coral, Sportingbet, and others. This quarter’s earnings follow 21 years in a row of double-digit growth in the firm’s net gaming revenue (NGR).

“We saw excellent growth across all our major markets other than Germany where regulatory changes have impacted the market,” according to the release. The London company is now reopening shuttered gambling halls and “we look forward to returning to more normal trading across our whole business.”

Entain is the third-largest gambling operator in the U.S. The firm’s joint partnership with BetMGM gives it an inroad to Nevada casino operator MGM Resorts, Gaming Intelligence reported.

Next Wednesday (April 21) Entain and MGM Resorts are hosting a digital conference for analysts and investors to offer up an inside view of the U.S. sports betting space and the iGaming business of BetMGM, according to a March press release from MGM Resorts.

Digital gaming got an unexpected leg-up from the COVID-19 pandemic that had most people worldwide trying to find a way online to work, eat, learn and have fun. Earlier this year, New York moved to enter the digital sports betting arena. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in January that he wants a single streamlined platform that works alongside casinos.

Online betting has also changed what it means to have a gift card. Talbott Roche, Blackhawk Network CEO and president, told PYMNTS Karen Webster that people are sometimes giving the cards to themselves to use as a payment method. She added that physical and digital gift cards are now becoming an important part of the digital-first economy.

British Global Gaming Platform Entain Posts Strong First Quarter …

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