Mobile phone betting helps to boost BskyB revenues

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The surge in mobile phone betting helped BSkyB’s growing Leeds-based gambling business to grew revenue by 37 per cent last year.

Sky Betting and Gaming, which employs 500 staff in the city, increased its revenue to £155m in the year to June 30 after re-launching its Sky Bet mobile phone app earlier this year.

It has taken over a million bets through the app.

Managing director Richard Flint said: “We’ve had a really good year and a big driver for that growth is betting on mobile. We updated it in the spring to make it faster and include more Sky content.”

Sky Betting and Gaming is looking to recruit another 50 people over the next couple of months, particularly internet and technology staff.

The company now has over a million active customers and has attracted half a million new customers in the last year.

Sky Bet, the sports betting division, recently became the new title sponsor of The Football League under a new five-year agreement. From next month, The Football League’s flagship competition will be titled The Sky Bet Football League, with its three divisions being titled The Sky Bet Championship, Sky Bet League 1 and Sky Bet League 2.

This new agreement is Sky Bet’s first ever off-screen football sponsorship and is aimed at building even greater awareness of Sky Bet’s growing range of online and mobile betting services.

Mr Flint said: “This is really big news for Sky Bet and also for the region. There are 10 Yorkshire clubs in those three divisions.”

He added: “We have a strong presence in Yorkshire so we are keen to make the most of our presence here.”

Sky has three sites and 1,100 employees in Leeds covering betting and gambling, digital sports media, a sales contact centre and a service contact centre. It also has a service contact centre, employing 500 people in Sheffield.

Sky, which announced its full-year results on Friday, said higher spending by households and businesses, plus the Sky Bet business, helped drive a seven per cent increase in group revenues.

The group grew revenues to £7.24bn, while pre-tax profits rose by six per cent to £1.26bn.

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