Flutter chief financial officer Paul Edgecliffe-Johnson has stepped down, as the company shifts its centre of gravity to the US.

Shares in the Paddy Power Betfair owner will begin trading in New York on Friday as it shifts its primary stock exchange listing from London. In a pointed statement on Friday, Flutter said “it is in the company’s best interests” for Edgecliffe-Johnson to leave his role with immediate effect. He has been succeeded by Rob Coldrake, who is currently CFO of Flutter’s international unit.

Given the “need for extensive executive management time to be spent in the United States, the board has recently engaged in a discussion with Paul Edgecliffe-Johnson concerning his ability to meet that requirement in light of his family commitments in the UK,” the company said. “Following this discussion, the board has concluded that it is in the company’s best interests for Paul Edgecliffe-Johnson to step down from his role as group CFO and executive director.

About 98 per cent of investors voted for the Irish gambling giant to shift its primary listing to Wall Street from London at the group’s annual general meeting at the start of May.

Company chief executive Peter Jackson said in a separate statement the move marked “an important milestone in the evolution of Flutter”.

“This closely follows the recent move of our operational headquarters to New York, with both reflecting the increasing importance of the US sports betting and iGaming market to our business,” he said.

“We have a fantastic position in the US, with FanDuel the clear number one operator, and we look forward to this next step on our journey.”

Flutter has been trading on the New York market since January this year. Mr Jackson previously pointed out that the market’s higher liquidity and greater trading volumes were a key attraction for the group.

He said these were “significantly higher” than anything in London or Dublin. Mr Jackson argued that European markets needed to focus on increasing liquidity if they wanted to attract new companies and keep existing ones.

Flutter left the Irish Stock Exchange last year. However, Mr Jackson stressed that “Ireland remains a very important place for us” adding that it was where Flutter was founded. The group remains headquartered in the Republic.

It has been growing its US business rapidly through subsidiary FanDuel since a federal court ruled in 2018 that individual states could legalise sports betting.

The group expects US earnings of between $635 million (€594 million) and $785 million this year. It is the market leader in betting on sports including the country’s National Football League and basketball.

FanDuel is the biggest single subsidiary in a group that also includes Betfair, Sky Bet, Pokerstars and Sportsbet in Australia, along with operations worldwide.

Moving its primary listing to New York means that Flutter will leave London’s FTSE 100 Index this month.

Flutter is the latest big name to shift its primary listing to New York from London, following Irish building materials group CRH among others, denting the British capital’s reputation as a financial centre.

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