Rank eyeing a deal after customer influx to bingo halls

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Mecca bingo owner Rank Group is in the market for deals after an influx of punters keen for a flutter fuelled a rise in performance at the group. 

“We do have an eye on M&A but there’s nothing we can say at the moment. We look at it as any big, ambitious company does,” chief executive Henry Birch said. 

The group, which owns Grosvenor Casinos, Mecca and has a big digital presence, fired on all cylinders in the six months ending December, with like-for-like revenues up by 5% to  £370.1 million and operating profit rising 11% to £46.1 million. 

Value-conscious older punters, as well as the growing trend for young hipsters to play bingo helped Mecca increase its customer numbers by 4% on last year. 

Prices on food and drink — Mecca has one of the cheapest pints of lager in London with Kronenberg setting you back £2.58 — also saw customers spending 2% more than last year at £19 each every visit.  

“You’re hard pressed to go out in London for a night and spend less than £20 these days,” Birch added. 

Grosvenor also posted a 7% rise in revenues to £143 million compared to last year despite some weakness in the lead up to Christmas.

In London its revenues rose 6% to £75.2 million.

Rank boosted its dividend by 13%. 

Source Article from http://www.standard.co.uk/business/rank-eyeing-a-deal-after-customer-influx-to-bingo-halls-a3168071.html

January 30, 2016 |
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