London-based online betting and gaming operator Leisure and Gaming has released a trading update for the fourth quarter showing gross profits of $2.59 million, which was up from $2.33 million for the same period last year.
The unaudited results also showed that net wins rose by five percent to $8.44 million from the $8.05 million reported for the same period last year while the net win margin held steady at 27 percent.
Leisure and Gaming also revealed that the amounts wagered increased by six percent to $31.29 million from the $29.48 million declared for the fourth quarter of 2007.
The firm stated that its positive performance was down to its growth in the Italian, Greek and Cypriot markets and reported that its active partners in Cyprus more than doubled from 21 to 47. It also announced that its Italian partner network increased by 65 outlets, or 13 percent, to 584 while it has seen ‘significant growth’ in its new Greek online business. In addition, Leisure and Gaming launched real-money poker in Italy in mid-November alongside new casino products for the Greek market.
'The growth in the number of partners in Italy and Cyprus has beaten our forecasts and the online offering continues to expand,” said Richard Creed, Chief Executive Officer for Leisure and Gaming.
“In particular, the introduction of real-money poker tournaments in Italy has been well received. In the six weeks to December 31, 2008, 4,886 unique customers played in these tournaments of which 80 percent were existing customers. Twenty percent of the new poker customers have also wagered on sports events.
“As at December 31, 2008, the group held cash balances of $1.94 million excluding cash held in escrow covering guarantees of $2.85 million.
“Trading since the New Year has been ahead of expectations with no reduction in customer spending or business activity.'