Toronto-based betting operator Rivalry has published its first financial results since listing on the TSX Venture Exchange last October.
The results, which cover Q4 and full-year 2021, demonstrate significant growth at the esports-led business in terms of both betting handle and revenue.
In Q4, Rivalry reported handle of C$24.9m, up almost five-fold from the C$5.1m handled in Q4 2020. Revenue for the quarter came in at C$2.2m, up from just C$0.3m in the prior year period. Gross profit for the quarter came to C$0.4m, up from C$0.1m.
“The growth we saw in Q4 was highly encouraging and a signal of strength in what is typically the most seasonally quiet quarter of the year, with us delivering modest sequential growth over Q3,” said Steven Salz, Rivalry co-founder and CEO.
“As our traditional sports betting product has continued to improve, we are seeing a more diverse product mix, which is helping to blunt the seasonality of esports, something that we expect to continue in the future.”
Looking at full-year 2021, total betting handle reached C$78.2m to more than triple 2020’s total of C$25.9m.
This gave the business C$11.1m in revenue, up from just C$1.5m in 2020. Gross profit for the year came in at C$2.2m, a significant improvement over 2020’s C$0.7m.
At the end of 2021, Rivalry had C$35.5m of cash on its balance sheet and no debt.
However, the company reported a full-year net loss of C$24.7m, demonstrating the cost of scaling after recording a net loss of C$6.8m in full-year 2020.
Rivalry CEO Steven Salz: “Through financially disciplined management and executing on our targeted operational goals, we believe our positive unit economics will improve and a path to profitability will become clear.”
“We had a tremendous year by nearly all measures in 2021,” Salz said. “Our team delivered triple-digit growth, secured the financial resources to accelerate our momentum, continued to strengthen our originally developed product, added significant talent depth to our bench, and further solidified Rivalry as the most engaged brand in esports betting globally.
“I’m also pleased to say we have continued that pacing into 2022, with our Q1 betting handle delivering 62% sequential growth over Q4, and up 273% year-over-year.”
Last year was an operationally significant year for Rivalry as customer registrations increased to around 610,000 in 2021, up from 350,000 in 2020.
This was assisted by Rivalry’s partner network and owned properties reaching a total of 55 million followers across its assets, which engage a younger generation of iGaming customers. The firm’s average customer age came in at 26 for 2021.
Heading into 2022, Rivalry said last year’s growth momentum has continued into the first quarter, with Q1 betting handle reaching a new record of C$40.2m, more than triple Q1 2021 levels and 62% ahead of Q4 2021.
In February, Rivalry was granted a gaming licence by the Northern Territory Racing Commission (NTRC), which allows the operator to provide regulated sports betting throughout Australia, marking its first fully regulated market entry.
Rivalry was also among the first operators to enter Ontario’s regulated iGaming market earlier this month.
Throughout the rest of this year, Rivalry said its goals include the meaningful expansion of its traditional sports offering, the development of new original games, and the launch of a mobile app for the “next generation” of customers.
The firm also intends to launch in new geographies under its existing Isle of Man licence and secure new regulated licences to grow user numbers and brand reach across the world.
“Our focus in 2022 is growth across product, new geographies, and an expansion of Rivalry’s creative universe to capitalise on what we believe is a generational opportunity to become the leader in betting and entertainment for the next generation.
“Through financially disciplined management and executing on our targeted operational goals, we believe our positive unit economics will improve and a path to profitability will become clear,” Salz concluded.