Online Casino Profits Spoil the Party
By Miriam H
PartyGaming, the leading online gaming operator, has reported a 5.7 percent fall in its principal full year profit.

For the year to Dec 31, 2006, the group made earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) share option charges, and exceptional items of $550.7 million compared with analysts' consensus forecast of $564.8 million and $583.7 million in the previous period.

Although the company was forced out of the US market, which provided 75 percent of its profits, last October, the group has recovered by focusing on its European markets, the Middle East and Africa, with its underlying EBITDA from continuing operations rising by 158 percent to $50.9 million.

“Whilst the decision to stop accepting customers from the US was a bitter blow for our business, our continuing operations have grown strongly from the lows reached in November 2006, benefiting from the rapid reorganisation of our business and the acceleration of our efforts in international territories,” said chief executive Mitch Garber.

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