The company is trading at a market cap representing a market cap greater than £1bn right now so perhaps walking away from that bid was the right decision.
They are not easy to find but I like small companies with decent payout ratios. It reminds executives of the main goal of business. The Board considers the appropriate target payout ratio to be approximately 40% of underlying profit after tax in the medium term.
Betfair is investing to improve its products for its ‘sophisticated’ customers. Betfair has a number of high-value customers using third party applications and automatic trading programs, which utilize its Application Program Interface (NYSEMKT:API) to directly access the Exchange. Betfair recently launched a new API to allow these vendors to build out more sophisticated trading tools to provide an improved user experience for this important customer segment
Fixed Odds Betting
Betfair recently launched a traditional sportsbook to complement its exchange offerings. The number of customers placing fixed-odds bets in FY13 was up 85% on the prior year, driven by 129% growth in the UK & Ireland. Initial evidence suggests that the Sportsbook is complementary to the Exchange, with 24% of UK football customers in March and April placing bets on both the Exchange and
Bingo & iPoker
In Q4, Betfair added Bingo to its product offerings and began the process of migrating customers to the iPoker network. This platform has greater liquidity than its previous network, particularly in newly regulating regions. This has caused an initial fall in customers but it provides customers with a better product and should lead to higher revenues in the longer term.
One of the problems with the online gambling industry is the the regulatory environment across Europe and the world. These are highly unpredictable, opportunistic (need some extra taxes, tax gambling) and different across countries or even states. Legislation continues to evolve with countries taking a range of approaches to the regulation of online gaming. Betfair continues to engage in these processes with the aim of achieving workable and fair regulation. Management reported it has recently seen positive steps towards the regulation of exchanges in Italy and Spain. Italy and Spain have some of the strongest soccer competitions in Europe and are vital markets next to Germany and the UK.