XLMedia continues to target casino vertical

Tuesday 26th January 2021

In a trading update, the digital marketing specialist said its was rationalising its portfolio which involved "significantly reducing the overall number of sites and upgrading the quality of those remaining"

XLMedia PLC (LON:XLM) has reiterated a "multi-track approach to recovering the casino vertical" alongside what it said is a fundamental rationalisation of its asset portfolio.

In a trading update for the year to December 31, 2020, the digital marketing specialist said the portfolio rationalisation involved "significantly reducing the overall number of sites and upgrading the quality of those remaining, with a concentration on highly-engaging content and enhanced functionality to drive increased traffic and build consumer loyalty".

READ: XLMedia expands presence in US sports market with CBWG Sports acquisition

XLMedia noted that its approach to recovering the casino vertical after a number of its sites were penalised by Google in early 2020 involved submitting to Google for reconsideration certain sites which have been rebuilt in-house or in conjunction with a partner as well as developing some entirely new sites, de-indexing sites which are immaterial and may have a negative impact on the authority of the premium websites, and disposing of sites which no longer fit with the direction of the business.

The company said it has now completed core development work on all the rebuilt sites that it will take forward and it has now commenced the submission process to Google for reconsideration.

To date, XLMedia said it has been successful in having the penalty removed for three of the ten sites it is aiming to recover, and that learnings from both the successes and initial rejections are being applied to the "ongoing refinement of the remaining sites" which will be resubmitted in due course.

In its numbers for the year, the company said it expects to report revenue of around US$54.5mln compared to US$79.7mln in 2019, as well as adjusted earnings (EBITDA) of US$11.5mln, down from US$33.5mln a year earlier.

XL Media shares were up 3.8% at 36.9p in early deals on Tuesday.

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