Friday August 26,2011 : Playtech financial results highlight the impact of reduced competition
Industry observers studying Thursday's Playtech corporate results have noted the brighter future which the suspension of Full Tilt Poker operations is likely to deliver.
Playtech's i-Poker network suffered a drop in online poker revenue of 33 percent between the first half of 2011 and the first half of 2010, falling from Euro 15.8 million to Euro 10.7 million.
Excluding the damage caused by exiting the French market, that is still a worrying decline of 25 percent.
By contrast, poker revenue at William Hill Online – Playtech's joint venture with William Hill – was up 11 percent.
Management explained the situation thus: “The international poker market continued to be subdued for the first four months of the year, but then experienced a seismic change with the indictment of a number of leading US-facing operators in April. There has been considerable change in player activity and deposits following the subsequent suspension of the licence of the second largest poker operator [FTP], as players sought to move their accounts to other operators.
“The clearest beneficiaries of this move have been leading operators with notable brands who have enjoyed considerable increases in new player deposits.
"Overall, the iPoker network has seen a material increase in activity as the poker market has become more balanced. In particular, our tournament volumes have been significantly higher in recent weeks and with the launch of Italian cash games in July there has been additional positive sentiment and activity.”