PartyGaming, 888 report half-year success

Too Close To Tell

Two of the United Kingdom's biggest online gambling operators are reporting a successful first half of the year. Both PartyGaming Plc. and 888 Holdings reported positive interim results this week.

PartyGaming, which operates PartyPoker, reported a profit for the first half compared to a loss during the first half of 2007 on higher revenues. For the first six months of 2008, profit after tax was $22.7 million compared to the $50.6 million loss last years.

Poker revenues for the company were up 6%, driven by higher yields. PartyGaming's casino revenues were up 38%, which it attributes to both higher player numbers and higher yields.

The company also saw its bingo revenues up 82% compared to the same time frame in 2007, and its sports betting revenues were up 36%.


"PartyGaming is a company that has transformed itself into a truly international business. The Group's performance over the first six months of 2008 is a testament to that transition," said Jim Ryan, PartyGaming CEO.

Ryan started as the PartyGaming CEO just a few weeks ago. He said in his short time there he has found a world class business with enormous potential. However, certain sectors of the business do need to grow and evolve with the changing market.

"Our poker business continues to grow but is being held back by the continued competition from those sites that accept players from the U.S." Ryan said. "We will continue to leverage our skills and technology through our own brands which remain strong and also through the brands of others in the form of white labels."

He also said the company now plans to enter into relationships with other gaming companies across all their products.

" As well as leveraging our skill set, I am also determined that we refocus on our core asset, our customer base," Ryan said. "The imminent relaunch of PartyPoker will be at the heart of this initiative and should foster further growth of our existing franchise, whilst greater licensing of our technology will create new and, I believe, significant opportunities to grow revenue and profit."

888 Holdings, home to Pacific Poker, also announced a rise in profit for the first half of 2008, showing a good rebound from its results from the same timeframe in 2007.


Net gaming revenues were up 36% for the company, and it posted a first-half net income of $18.87 million. In the first half of 2007, 888 posted a $13.53 million net income.

The company's net gaming revenues rose to $131.53 million as compared to $96.82 million in 2007. Most of the boost came from the company's online casino and emerging offerings, but it did see an increase in poker profits as well.

"The first half of 2008 was very successful for 888 Holdings as our innovative strategy, enhanced offering and strong brand enabled us to achieve record half year results and a seventh consecutive period of quarter on quarter growth," said Gigi Levy, 888 CEO.

"Revenue from our core operations has been boosted by the successful launch of 888ladies and 888sport, and our addition of over 1,000 best of breed games will help increase revenue further."

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