Tabcorp to ramp up online wagering efforts after posting $35M half-year profit

Australian gambling company Tabcorp announced it will increase its online wagering profile in direct competition with bookmakers Sportsbet and Ladbrokes after recording an AUD 52 million ($35.5 million) profit in six months. The business, traditionally associated with in-store betting, launched its digital gambling app in September, which it will now prioritize in an attempt to lure customers away from foreign-owned sports betting brands.

Chief Executive Adam Rytenskild said Tabcorp plans to increase its digital market share from 25% to 30% within the next two years, reports The Guardian. “We’ll do this with a transformation of our entire wagering ecosystem, including new products for punters, a reinvigoration of Sky Racing that will include a greater integration with TAB and the implementation of our new marketing strategy,” Rytenskild stated.

“The successful launch of the new TAB app, which helped us retain digital market share despite the introduction of a new competitor, has provided a strong launchpad to reach our 30% target,” the executive noted. Rytenskild also said Tabcorp held its digital market share in the last half of 2022, despite increasing competition and the arrival of News Corp-backed wagering company Betr, which he accused of “highly distortionary promotional offers.”

The change of strategy comes after Tabcorp strongly criticized online sports gambling companies, having called for an overhaul of regulation to limit advertising and strengthen oversight. The firm has also called for policies that favor in-store gambling, rather than betting on mobile phones and lobbied for a new national body to boost oversight of online gambling.

Most digital wagering companies are licensed in the Northern Territory and are subject to oversight from the NT Racing Commission, despite operating nationally. “Only a single national betting regulator could enable all states and territories to act in harmony to bring their regulations into line with the modern economy,” said a Tabcorp submission to an ongoing parliamentary inquiry into online gambling, as reported by the cited source.

Despite significantly boosting revenue from gambling, Rytenskild said Tabcorp had a “genuine aim to do the right thing” and meet high expectations for compliance and transparency. Tabcorp recorded a 58% increase in cash wagering revenue as punters returned to retail venues after pandemic lockdowns; and overall revenue increased by 11% to AUD 1.27 billion ($867 million). The company has also announced plans to cut spending by AUD 20 million ($13.6 million) over the next three years.