Bookmaker GVC flags profit hit from latest virus-led closures

FILE PHOTO: General view inside a deserted Ladbrokes shop in Harpenden as the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues, in Harpenden, Britain, March 18, 2020. REUTERS/Peter Cziborra

(Reuters) - Ladbrokes and bwin owner GVC GVC.L on Monday warned of a 43 million pound hit to profit if its gambling stores remain closed for an entire month under the latest coronavirus lockdowns in Britain and Europe.

The bookmaker said it expects a dent in its total earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA), led by an impact of 34 million pounds to UK retail alone.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson this weekend announced a one-month lockdown for England. This could be extended as Britain struggles to contain a second wave of the pandemic - the region has the biggest official death toll in Europe.

GVC expects its wider European retail operations to be hit by about 9 million pounds, if outlets remained closed for all of November, as France and Germany also went into lockdowns over surging COVID-19 infections.

However, the British company expects an overall lower hit of 37 million pounds under current store closure requirements.

GVC said the estimated impact also includes benefits from government support and other cost cuts.

Reporting by Pushkala Aripaka in Bengaluru, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips