Online Casino Firm’s Profits Excel
By Marianne Lambert
Online gaming technology firm Playtech has exceeded analyst expectations, posting a first quarter profit of $19.8m, with growth expected to continue.

Playtech saw a 56% increase in online poker revenue, to a total of $4.2m - double last year’s figure. Europe is an expanding market as many sites join Playtech’s market-leading iPoker network. The latest migration by Tribeca doubled player numbers but was completed a month ahead of schedule. This will also mean increased future revenues

Meanwhile, land-based operator Harrah’s Entertainment missed Wall Street predictions for earnings of $1 per share by 2 cents. However, with a net profit of $185.3m, the world’s largest casino operator is still a worthy target for its planned takeover.

Harrah’s profits were down due to marketing costs in the north-eastern States. Such an investment is not bad news for Apollo Management and Texas Pacific group who agreed to pay $17bn or $90 a share for Harrah’s in December.

Both Harrah’s and Playtech have benefited from the growing popularity of online and offline poker; Harrah’s host the World Series of Poker this year and has profited from the growth of televised poker tournaments.

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