William Hill share price: what’s the outlook as jobs slashed?

The bookmaker is set to shutdown 700 high street stores, putting 4,500 jobs at risk, after UK government clampdown on fixed-odds betting terminals.

William Hill Source: Bloomberg

William Hill announced that it plans to shutdown around 700 of its high street betting shops, putting more than 4,500 jobs at risk, after the UK government clampdown on fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBT).

The decision to close hundreds of physical locations came after the UK government limited the maximum stake on FOBT’s to £2 back in April, which has put a major dent in the company’s gaming machine revenues.

‘A large number of redundancies is anticipated with 4,500 colleagues at risk,’ the company said in a statement.

‘The Group will look to apply voluntary redundancy and redeployment measures extensively and will be providing support to all colleagues throughout the process.’

William Hill’s share price edges lower on store closures

William Hill’s share price tumbled as much as 2% to 158p on Thursday morning after the news of its store closures hit.

However, its stock has since recovered, trading at 160p as of 16:10 GMT, a touch under its opening price of 161p.

Learn more about trading William Hill and other stocks with IG.

Ladbrokes Coral also plans to close hundreds of stores

William Hill isn’t the only bookmaker closing high street stores in the wake of the government clampdown on FOBT’s, however, with rival Ladbrokes Coral looking to close around 900 locations.

‘We now expect up to 900 shops to be at risk of closure over the next two years as a result of the reduction in maximum stakes on FOBTs to £2,’ Ladbrokes Coral owner GVC said in a statement.

‘This is not a decision we are taking lightly, and we will be working hard to minimise the number of redundancies through redeployment within the business, whilst offering redundancy terms enhanced beyond the statutory requirement.’

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