Rank gambles head-on
By emily
Rank Group has announced plans to sell its Deluxe Media DVD unit and is looking at ways of splitting off its film processing business to focus on gambling, restaurants and hotels.

Rank, which has distributed movies for more than 50 years, is concentrating on its gambling business as the government plans to relax legislation governing the $3.8 billion UK gaming industry.

Rank said it made a net loss of 119.4 million pounds, or 19.9 pence a share, in the fiscal year ended Dec. 31 and have decided to sell Deluxe Film because of the loss. The Chief Executive of the company said, ”We were expecting greater progress to have been made at this stage.

Operating profit at Rank's gambling businesses, including Grosvenor Casinos, Mecca Bingo and Blue Square online betting, rose 1 percent to 112 million pounds in the year. Mecca's UK earnings were little changed at 70.5 million pounds, while Grosvenor's profit rose 6.6 percent to 32.1 million pounds.

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