Tuesday May 24,2016 :  CHINA-FACING ONLINE LOTTERY PROVIDER'S LOSSES GROW
 
500.com reports losses of US$14.1 million in Q1-2016.
 
The ongoing suspension of online lottery activity by the Chinese government continues to impact providers like Hong Kong-based 500.com, which this week posted continuing losses in its online division during the first quarter of 2016.
 
The company reported net losses of RMB90.9 million (US$14.1 million), greater than the RMB52.0 million loss a year ago, noting that the continued online lottery suspension, which began in March 2015, meant the company did not generate any revenue from sports lottery sales.
 
The company revealed that revenue generated from rendering technical and data maintenance services through its online payment supplier Sumpay.cn was RMB2.2 billion, but added that the company disposed of its 63 percent equity interest in Sumpay at the end of March this year for a consideration of RMB359.1 million.
 
According to the purchase agreement, 20 percent of the total consideration, or RMB71.8 million, will be transferred immediately to the company by the acquirer, and the remaining 80 percent, or RMB287.3 million, will be settled within 10 days after Sumpay.cn successfully renews its online payment license in 2016.
 
500.com's chief executive, Zhengming Pan, took the opportunity to reemphasise that the company was one of only two firms approved by the Chinese  Ministry of Finance in 2012 to provide online lottery sales services, and this situation has not changed.
 
“To the best of the company’s knowledge, the approval by the Ministry of Finance… is valid and has not been revoked or amended as of the date of this earnings release,” he reiterated.
 
500.com has experienced hard times since the suspension was imposed, in 2015 reporting full year net revenue down 82.8 percent  at RMB 99.6 million and an operating loss of RMB 301.4 million….a massive 301.6 percent decrease from operating profit in 2014 of RMB149.5 million.