Kindred Group Plc has published its Sustainability Report for 2021, updating investors and corporate stakeholders on the progress of its long-term CSR objectives and underlining a sustainable operating strategy.
Entering 2021, Kindred’s executive leadership team announced that the Stockholm-listed operator would become the first online gambling plc to report on safer gambling and sustainability metrics as a financial duty.
The pledge was deemed a necessary measure as Kindred maintains its headline CSR objective to achieve “0% revenues from harmful gaming by 2023”.
The group’s CSR charter is formed by the five strategic principles of – ‘Responsible gambling’, ‘Maintaining integrity’, ‘Running a compliant business’, ‘Being Kindred’ and ‘Contributing to local communities’.
An overview of Kindred’s FY2021 financial performance saw the group generate gross winnings of £1.26 billion, with an underlying EBITDA result of £332 million (26% EBITDA margin).
Kindred revealed that during year trading, it recorded a 4% share of Gross Win revenues attributed to ‘high-risk customers’ – defined as “players who have closed their account due to addiction or have been detected by Kindred’s player detection system (PS-EDS) for having highest risk levels”.
Minimising harmful risk continues to be the operator’s priority, in which Kindred safer gambling systems and procedures have added “24 new criteria” to monitor customer play from “web analytics, risk calculations, and new data points to improve the outcome of detection accuracy” by the PS-EDS framework.
Further risk minimising directives saw Kindred increase the use of control tools promoted to customers, which saw customer care teams target the demographic of players aged 18-24 and establish “tailored approaches that have already provided benefits”.
Maintaining an open dialogue with its customer base of 3.5 million active players, Kindred reported positive feedback of “86% of customers who believe that Kindred brands offer a trustworthy online gambling experience”.
On customer feedback, Kindred underlined that it had taken a new data-driven approach to evaluate its brand performance, in which it evaluated over 430,000 player survey responses to help track KPIs and improve the management of day-to-day services.
Detailed as a key CSR directive, Kindred presented its first corporate results tracking its global eco-sustainability performance, in which the group generated 61% of electricity from renewable sources.
Eco-sustainability will become a forefront directive as Kindred returns its workforce back to its offices across its global jurisdictions following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Lastly maintaining its “Being Kindred” directive, the group spent £41.3 million on community-led sports sponsorships in which it launched the formative partnerships of #GoRacingGreen and the European Football Development Network.
Group CEO Henrik Tjärnström commented on 2021 achievements – “Looking ahead, I see an exciting future for Kindred. Over ten years ago we embarked on a strategy to transform ourselves and overtime only operate in locally licensed markets.”
“In 2020 we took the decision to adapt the organisation for this future based on scalability, compliance and differentiation. In the final quarter of 2021, we derived 77 per cent of our Gross winnings revenue from locally licenced markets and have proved we can be scalable in these markets with solid bottom-line growth.”