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DraftKings Down on Dud Earnings, Guidance, NFL Losses Pinch Outlook

DraftKings (NASDAQ:DKNG) stock is probing its lowest levels since May. That’s after the online sportsbook operator posted a wider-than-expected third-quarter loss and delivered 2021 guidance analysts see as disappointing.

In midday trading, the shares are off 2.5 percent on volume that’s nearly double the daily average, extending a decline of almost nine percent over the past month. Prior to the open of US markets today, DraftKings said it lost $1.35 a share on revenue of $213 million in the September quarter. Analysts expected a loss of $1.06 on sales of $236.6 million.

That downbeat report prompted a tightening of the operator’s 2021 top-line forecast. It’s expecting revenue of $1.24 billion to $1.28 billion, compared with previous guidance of $1.21 billion to $1.29 billion.

This guidance reflects strong results year-to-date, completed new state launches and our demonstrated ability to engage users and acquire customers efficiently and does not include the impact of any new state launches after November 5th, 2021,” according to the company.

That projection equals year-over-year growth of 93 percent to 99 percent.

Some Expected Disappointment, 2022 Guidance OK
Leading up to DraftKings’ earnings report, some analysts warned it could be a dud, pointing to slack data from some rivals as a sign the operator was poised to disappoint.

Bad luck for the house on NFL games was a part in DraftKings’ poor third-quarter results. While the quarter featured just a few weeks of NFL games, the operators said its revenue for the period was hindered by bettors’ NFL success.

“On a same state basis and taking into consideration lower than expected hold primarily due to NFL game outcomes, third quarter revenue would have been $40 million higher,” according to the company.

That trend doesn’t appear to be abating, as the operator’s full-year forecast includes a $25 million negative revenue impact driven in large part by clients winning on NFL action in October.

For 2022, the company is estimating revenue of $1.7 billion to $1.9 billion, representing year-over-year growth of 43 percent. Wall Street is expecting $1.81 billion.

“This range is based on the same assumptions used for the Company’s 2021 guidance, including no impact from any new state launches after November 5th, 2021,” according to the company.

DraftKings Still Losing Money
DraftKings’ average revenue per monthly unique player (ARPMUP) was $47 in the third quarter — a 38 percent year-over-year jump. However, the operator continues to be unprofitable.

DraftKings currently isn’t profitable, and concerns about when that will change have been on investors’ minds for some time. Consensus wisdom holds that the company will turn profitable on earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) basis around 2023. But there are dissenting voices, with at least one analyst saying that won’t happen until 2025.

Separately, DraftKings is proving to be an acquisitive company, and is seemingly often at the center of sports betting consolidation rumors. However, it didn’t comment on recent speculation that it’s vying for The Athletic.

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