William Hill’s Chief Executive Officer, Ulrik Bengtsson, continues to bring changes to the company as it is set to merge their UK online and retail departments.
The company has said that this decision stemmed from its focus on fast-tracking its financial recovery in 2021. In an effort towards this goal, the company has performed this major reorganisation move while also closing 713 betting shops as a response to the UK government’s recent fixed-odds betting terminal (FOBT) tax crackdown.
The one at the helm of this single UK market division is Phil Walker, the firm’s UK online managing director. He was put in the reigns of this division as his counterpart in the retail division, Nicola Frampton, is leaving the company after ten years, joining the already growing list of senior figures that have left the bookmaker recently. Frampton joined the company in 2010 and became the director of UK retail four years later, in 2014. In preparation for her departure, Frampton and Walker will work together over a six-month transition period as she hands over her reigns.
Walker, having previously spent nearly eight years working for William Hill’s rivals, Gala Coral Group and Ladbrokes Coral, has led the company’s UK online business for the last 18 months. Frampton commented that the opportunity of working with and leading William Hill’s retail team has been an absolute privilege. She also mentioned that their shops play a vital role in the company’s success and she looks forward to working with Walker on a handover plan in the next coming months.
Bengtsson, commenting on Frampton’s future departure, said that the company will be immensely saddened by her departure when the time comes as she has been with the company for ten years. He also praised Frampton by saying that she has been an instrumental figure in transforming and shaping their retail business and as well as the executive team’s driving force.
On other organisational changes, Charlotte Emery, William Hill’s global brand and marketing director, has been appointed to their executive team, leading the newly created Brand Centre of Excellence.
In another move towards the company’s optimisation, William Hill is shutting down its offices in Sweden, acknowledging that they had to make tough decisions on which locations should remain open. The company confirmed that they will be closing the Stockholm office by the end of the year leading to layoffs, redundancies and possibly, relocation to other offices such as Krakow or Leeds. The company, in its efforts to adopt an efficient team-based approach, further stressed the necessity of building the right teams aligned to support key business areas and structuring the right number of teams and skill sets in a bid to streamline operations as much as possible.
The company’s recent 2020 performance has not been reassuring as its sports betting division suffered a major blow due to the recent coronavirus pandemic and subsequent lockdown of sporting events all over the world. As with many other industries and businesses, this has significantly impacted the company’s revenue during the time period of March 11 – April 28, by cutting it to more than half (57%) of its usual revenue numbers. Interestingly one of their rivals 888 Holdings seemed to have bucked that trend.