Analysis: 'Betty Power' odds on favourite to become dominant force in consolidating industry
It's only a few weeks since the social media crew at Paddy Power joked on the company's Twitter account, inset, after Ladbrokes and Gala Coral announced their merger, that Paddy Power would merge with Betfair and be called Betty Power.
All they got wrong was the name. Yesterday, the day kicked off with a Paddy Power tweet to directed to Betfair: "Morning brother!" followed by "Bagsy top bunk".
With the pair soon to be in bed with one another, the merged Paddy Power-Betfair business will become the dominant force in the UK betting sector, with tentacles stretching from the US to Australia.
"Combined, the product offering will be as good as, if not better than, all leading competitors," said analyst David Jennings at Davy Stockbrokers. "We see substantial value creation potential," he added. Paddy Power will continue to operate its high street retail network in Ireland and the UK - Betfair doesn't have a bricks and mortar presence.
But it's on the digital side where the real action will be. Paddy Power's online operating profit, excluding its Australian operations, rose 21pc to €31.6m in the first half of the year. In Australia, its online operating profit jumped 69pc to €38.8m.