Total group revenue for Catena Media decreased by five per cent year-on-year in Q1 to €35m, but CEO Michael Daly hailed the impact of higher profitability in Europe and the addition of Ohio sports betting.

Catena Media

North America revenue decreased by two per cent to €28.9m, but the group noted there were “challenging comparatives” from the launch of sports betting in New York last January.

Nevertheless, there was strong player participation in Ohio, which ranked as “one of the group’s best-ever US state launches," it said.

Adjusted EBITDA for Q1 from continuing operations decreased by seven per cent to €20.5m, corresponding to an adjusted EBITDA margin of 59 per cent.

Daly said: “The addition of Ohio and Massachusetts as new online sports betting states helped drive solid revenue in our core North American affiliation business during the period.

“We also achieved higher profitability in our European business in the wake of the strategic review we concluded at the end of last year.

“The margin improvement in our continuing operations in Europe was especially gratifying as it represents an immediate payback on our decision to target resources on our most profitable markets while also undertaking cost optimisation measures in selected areas as part of the strategic review.

“We also brought this amplified cost focus to bear on our already highly profitable North American business, where we see continued high margins for Catena Media even as well established state and provincial markets mature.”

Catena has subsequently presented new financial targets for 2023 to 2025, including North American revenue of US$125m in 2025 and an adjusted EBITDA margin in the continent of over 50 per cent by the same time.

In sports and casino, organic revenue growth was “especially strong in New Jersey” due to strong organic search traffic and the media content partnership signed with last year, Daly added.