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Online casino drives RSI revenue growth in 2020


Rush Street Interactive (RSI) saw net revenue rocket 337% year-on-year in 2020, with casino significantly outperforming sports betting in key markets.  

However, an increase in costs also saw its net loss grow to $138.8m.

Total revenue for the 12 months to December 31, 2020 amounted to $278.5m, up from $63.7m in the previous year.

RSI did not publish a full breakdown of revenue, but noted its online casino operations outperformed sports betting by three-to-one in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania in 2020.

Online casino, which includes slots and tables but excludes poker, accounted for 76.7% of revenue in Pennsylvania last year, compared to 23.3% for sports betting, while casino was responsible for 72.1% of New Jersey, ahead of sports betting on 27.9%.

However, full-year operating costs and expenses rocketed by 379% year-on-year to $411.9m, with the cost of revenue being RSI’s main outgoing, jumping 480% to $190.9m.

Adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) was also up from a loss of $7.8m in 2019 to a positive of $4.4m last year.

Despite this and significant revenue growth, higher spending meant operating loss widened from $22.3m in 2019 to $133.4m. After accounting for $2.5m in other costs, loss before tax was $135.9m, compared to $22.5m in the previous year.

RSI paid $2.9m in tax, leaving it with a net loss of $138.8m However, RSI said as $138.2m of this loss was attributed to its non-controlling interests, the net loss attributable to RSI was much lower at $575,000, compared to $22.5m in 2019.

“Throughout 2020, RSI continued its rapid expansion in both new and existing markets achieving revenue growth of 337%,” RSI chief executive Greg Carlin said. “We achieved these strong results with a modest 2020 marketing expense of $56.5m.

“Our significant cash balance at year end plus the incremental cash from our ongoing warrant redemption will allow us to significantly increase 2021 marketing spend and leverage what we believe to be industry leading acquisition costs, payback rates, and average revenue per user.”

RSI also published its fourth-quarter results, during which revenue was up 260% to $100.0m. However, as operating costs also increased 235% to $143.5m, this meant operating loss stood at $43.5m, compared to $15.1m in 2019.

After accounting for $2.4m in other expenses, this left a loss before tax of $45.9m. RSI paid $2.9m in tax, meaning it ended Q4 with a net loss of $48.8m, compared to $15.1m in the previous year.

However, as was the case with RSI’s full-year results, most of this loss ($48.2m) was attributed to non-controlling interests. Net loss attributable to RSI came in at $575,000, compared to $15.1m in 2019.

RSI said 2020’s revenue growth in 2020 had prompted it to increase its forecasts for the 2021 financial year. RSI now expects revenues for the current year to be between $420m and $460m, up from previous guidance of $320m.

“We are significantly increasing 2021 guidance and intend to aggressively pursue opportunities for further growth now that we are better capitalized than at any time in our operating history,” Carlin said.

“We are confident these additional investments will support our goal of being the leader in online casino and driving significant profitability over the long term.”

Publication of the results comes after RSI late last year completed its combination with special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) dMY Technology Group, with trading of its shares on the New York Stock Exchange beginning on 30 December.

Announced in July 2020, the combination of RSI and dMY created a major online casino and sports betting operator active in New Jersey, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Illinois and Iowa, as well as in Colombia.