Sunday, 19 January 2014

Increased Customer Confidence

Having drawn attention earlier in the week to the fact that only one team at sub 1.3 failed to win in the English Premier League last season (2012-13), right on cue comes the second such occurrence of this season, as Liverpool failed to beat Aston Villa and thus joined Manchester United who lost to West Bromwich Albion at 1.29 back in September. At least we should be spared the heart-wrenching Press Releases this weekend detailing just how tough the life of a modern day bookmaker is, words that in our minds are accompanied by the saddest music emanating from a tiny violin.

Ralph Topping, William Hill CEO, issued this Press Release last week:

Current trading
Online Sportsbook has continued to show strong wagering growth, up 48% in the first two weeks of 2014. However, football results in week 2 were highly unfavourable with an unusually high number of odds-on favourites winning. Driven by the impact of this on our otherwise very attractive accumulator business, we recorded a £13m loss in the week. There is no certainty that we can recoup this shortfall to internal expectations but based on previous experience of such customer-friendly outcomes, such as 'Dettori Day' in 1996, we anticipate a positive benefit from increased customer confidence, particularly with so much of the season ahead and with the 2014 World Cup to come.
Coral's Simon Clare released this yesterday, with similar expectations of increased betting as word spreads about how easy it is to win big money:
Britain’s bookmakers are expecting a massive increase in football betting turnover tomorrow after the most punter-friendly football results in recent history cost the betting industry over £30 million pounds last weekend.
Many thousands of customers across the country won sizeable four figure sums for stakes of less than £10, with twenty five Coral betting shop customers winning sums of between £10,000 and £89,000. Coral is anticipating that the huge national media and social media coverage of all these stories of successful punters will encourage more people than ever before to have a flutter on football on Saturday.
“We suffered record losses on football last weekend that will live in the memory for a very long time. However we expect that the tales of such an unprecedented number of successful punters and that have been shared across the media, the internet and through social media all week, will encourage anyone who’s ever had a flutter to have a small stakes accumulator on this weekend’s football to try and emulate their success,” said Simon Clare, Coral Spokesman.
“Last weekend’s football results were almost as bad as they could be, as 15 of the 16 most popular teams won, so we are looking forward to a huge upsurge in bets tomorrow and just crossing our fingers that lightning doesn’t strike twice”, added Clare.
To help anyone struggling to follow the yellow brick road to riches, Simon helpfully included the "Most Popular Top 15 Selections on Accumulators with Coral this weekend".

And how did they fare? Of the thirteen matches complete (Rangers play tomorrow, and Wolverhampton Wanderers match was postponed), six of the favourites lost, including Liverpool as mentioned above. The full list was:
Arsenal, Man City, Liverpool, Leicester, Burnley, Birmingham, QPR, Notts Forest, Leyton Orient, Brentford, Wolves, Chesterfield, Scunthorpe, Celtic, and Rangers
Business as normal in other words, but don't expect any Press Releases reporting on record profits.

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