The Rank Group published its first half results, which showed an operating profit of £4.2m ($5.1m).
However, despite the profit, the overall figure was down sharply from the first half of 2022, which stood at £24.9m, representing an 83% drop. Something the company attributed to wage inflation and higher energy costs.
But despite the drop in operating profit, net gaming revenue (NGR) in the first half grew by 2% year-on-year, according to the report, with digital revenue showing a 9% increase, although Grosvenor saw a decrease of 5%.
The group also said it had available funding of £148.4m, with a refinancing of its bank facilities planned for the second half of 2023.
John O’Reilly, CEO of The Rank Group, said: “Recovery from the severe impact of the pandemic on our UK, Grosvenor and Mecca locations business has certainly been slower than we anticipated. Since lockdown, we have faced a huge rise in energy costs, high wage inflation, the slow return of overseas visitors to London and increased pressure on consumer incomes.”
“We have also experienced an ongoing tightening of the regulatory environment, particularly with regard to accessibility restrictions for customers. However, momentum is improving as we invest in the quality of our products and properties, introduce new game concepts to our customers, reduce the level of intrusion into customer risk management, and reintroduce inactive customers to the fun and excitement of our gaming experience,” he added.
War in Ukraine impacted The Rank Group performance
After the release of first-half results, Rank’s share price fell 1% but remained up 7% over the previous five days. The impact of the war in Ukraine is being felt in the retail gaming sector as it costs more to operate land-based casinos – which has drastically impacted Rank’s performance over the last six months.