|Hilton owns and operates almost 1,900 Ladbroke betting shops in the UK and around 400 hotels. After a lull in the hotels industry in 2001, Chief Executive David Michels was comforted by an increase in revenue per available room (revpar) of 10%.|
Hilton's betting business was adversely affected by a peak in gambling payouts at UK horse race meetings such as the Grand National and Cheltenham. However, the group's betting and gaming side saw a level total gross win despite UK betting shops seeing the overall gross win fall by 1%.
The announcement comes only days after William Hill announced that they had overtaken Labrokes to become Britain's biggest bookmaker by buying Stanley Leisure's 624 betting shops for £504 million. William Hill also reported a level gross win.
Hilton shares fell 0.54% to 275 pence at 2200 GMT, a long way from the dizzy heights of 326 pence achieved in February.
'As results usually level out over the year, we expect improving margins should lead to good growth in the second half in gaming,' Michels commented.