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Entain Starts Search for New CEO after Jette Nygaard-Andersen Steps Down

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Jette Nygaard-Andersen has stepped down from her position as chief executive of the gambling conglomerate Entain, effective immediately.

Since January 2021, Nygaard-Andersen has been at the helm of Entain, initially joining the company as a non-executive director. Her previous role was with Modern Times Group, and she succeeded Shay Segev at Entain, who moved to Dazn. Stella David, currently serving as a non-executive director, will assume the role of CEO on an interim basis while the search for a permanent replacement takes place.

Tributes Role in for Nygaard-Andersen’s Achievements

Entain’s chairman, Barry Gibson, expressed his admiration for Nygaard-Andersen’s leadership.

Under Jette’s leadership, Entain has executed a fundamental strategic shift towards regulated or regulating markets, overhauled its governance, transformed its operations, and significantly improved its customer offering. In Stella David, we are hugely fortunate to have an intensely commercial leader with a long track record of success across multiple industries. I am confident that she will quickly help to set us on the path to achieving our strategic aims while we conduct a rigorous search for a permanent CEO.

Barry GibsonEntain Chairman

Nygaard-Andersen Departs Following Agreement with CPS

Nygaard-Andersen’s resignation follows shortly after Entain’s closure of a longstanding case with the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) regarding past activities in Turkey. Entain recently concluded a Deferred Prosecution Agreement (DPA) with the CPS, involving a financial penalty and profit disgorgement totaling £585.5 million, a £20 million charitable donation, and a £10 million contribution to HMRC and CPS costs.

Gibson praised Nygaard-Andersen for her "exceptional leadership" during this challenging period. He credited her with steering the company through these difficulties and playing a pivotal role in achieving a settlement. Nygaard-Andersen herself remarked on her tenure, describing it as both rewarding and challenging and said that the resolution of the HMRC investigation offers her a “clean inflection point”.

What’s Next for Entain?

Nygaard-Andersen’s leadership was crucial in stabilizing Entain during the turbulent period of the CPS case. Nonetheless, concerns about the company’s growth remain. Goldman Sachs recently downgraded Entain’s status from ‘buy’ to ‘sell’, citing apprehensions about the company’s online division growth and projecting negative online growth in the near future.

Furthermore, the company, which has been focusing on expanding its US presence, has seen mixed results. Its joint venture, BetMGM, holds a steady market share, but challenges remain. Additionally, MGM’s recent decision to partner with LeoVegas for its UK expansion, bypassing Entain, raises questions about confidence in the company.

Despite these challenges, Entain’s leadership, including Chairman Gibson and Nygaard-Andersen, have shown confidence in the company’s prospects by increasing their shareholdings. The company’s performance in the first half of 2023 was strong, though its online net gaming revenue growth slowed down in the third quarter.

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