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Playtech Puts Up Positive Outlook

By: Mark Freedman, Friday April 29th 2011
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The online gambling software developer Playtech has released positive financial results for the three months ending March 31, 2011. The progress of the various projects under execution has been reported as satisfactory.

After making the required adjustments to make the results comparable, the gross income has gone up 20% and total revenue has gone up 16% as compared to the first quarter of 2010. Online casino revenues are up 23% as compared to the first quarter of 2010 but are down 2% as compared to the fourth quarter of 2010. A similar situation exists for online poker revenues. An important indicator, and one that the online casino industry was waiting for, is Playtech's share of profit in the joint venture William Hill Online. This has been estimated as €9.9 million, which is up 34% as compared to the first quarter of 2010 and up 41% as compared to the last quarter of 2010. This is of interest because of the ongoing dispute between Playtech and William Hill. The management of Playtech has also reported improved daily activity in the current quarter of 2011.

Videobet, which has been acquired by Playtech, is on track in the completion of its United Kingdom contracts. Over 17,000 machines have been converted and the rest are expected to be converted by the second quarter of 2011. Playtech is putting in a lot of effort in the Italian online gaming market. It was the first software provider to launch €250 buy-in poker tournaments under new Italian regulations. As when the Italian online casino regulations will be in place, Playtech will be ready with its product. A large number of its casino games have already been approved and more approvals are in the process. A provisional license has been received from the authority in Malta for its Live Casino product. Playtech is also in the process of finalizing agreements with a number of potential major new licensees across a number of jurisdictions both in Europe and elsewhere.

Playtech's chief executive, Mor Weizer, expressed confidence in the long term establishment of regulatory mechanisms in most jurisdictions, despite near term set backs. Therefore it is Playtech's policy to continue investing in positioning itself to leverage whatever opportunities come out of such regulation. The recent acquisition of PTTS is just one example of this. Weizer also referred to the recent actions taken by the US Department of Justice against certain US-facing online poker sites. He said, "Playtech believes that this action will in the longer term have a positive benefit to the iPoker networks both in the segment and also in the European regulated markets."

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