Tabcorp shares tumble 4% after naming ex-AFL boss as new CEO

The gambling company has finally found its new leader. What will his focus be?

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Tabcorp Holdings Ltd (ASX: TAH) shares are on the slide on Monday.

In morning trade, the gambling company's shares are down 4% to 63 cents.

Why are Tabcorp shares falling?

Investors have been selling the company's shares on Monday after appearing to respond negatively to the announcement of its new leader.

According to the release, Tabcorp has appointed ex-AFL boss Gillon McLachlan as its new managing director and CEO.

McLachlan will join Tabcorp on 5 August and assume the role upon receipt of all necessary regulatory approvals. In the interim, he will act in an observer capacity with Bruce Akhurst continuing to act as executive chairman.

The company appears optimistic that McLachlan could repeat his AFL success with Tabcorp.

The release notes that during his decade leading the AFL, McLachlan more than doubled revenues from $502 million in 2013 to $1,063 million in 2023. This includes securing the largest sports broadcasting rights deal in Australian history.

Tabcorp also highlights that its new CEO has proven success in managing complex stakeholder environments and working productively with all levels of government. He also has extensive racing knowledge as a thoroughbred owner and breeder.

'One of Australia's leading CEOs'

Commenting on the appointment, Tabcorp's executive chair said:

Gill needs no introduction – he is recognised as one of Australia's leading CEOs and securing Gill is a great vote of confidence for Tabcorp's future. We've laid strong foundations and Gill brings a growth mindset and the capability to capitalise on the opportunities ahead of us.

Gill has a deep understanding of sport, racing and wagering, combined with significant commercial acumen which was highlighted in the substantial growth of AFL revenues under his leadership.

Importantly for us, Gill brings an added dimension of having been responsible for some of the most significant media rights deals in Australian sports history and we're excited about the potential growth opportunities for our wagering and media business under his leadership.

The company's incoming CEO revealed that he would be focused on accelerating the growth of Tabcorp:

Tabcorp is a wagering, broadcast and integrity services business and the challenges of growing it are appealing. It's about creating entertainment for our customers in a safe way and providing a unique customer omni-channel entertainment offering across digital, retail and the media business.

There are enormous opportunities ahead and I'm looking forward to driving the sport category among other things. Tabcorp is part way through its transformation journey and I'm looking forward to working with the leadership team to accelerate and deliver on the growth opportunities.

Tabcorp shares are down approximately 25% in 2024.

Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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