Gibraltar-based online casino gambling group Party Gaming reported its 2008 Quarter 1 results this week, showcasing a stellar performance by the online casino division that contributed significantly to the overall growth in revenues of 21 percent.
Group revenue lifted to $128.9 million in the first three months of 2008, up from $106.2 million in 2007 and 6 percent higher than the previous quarter, mainly due to a 45 percent year-on-year revenue growth to $43.5 million at casino operations.
Poker revenue rose 13 percent to $80.7 million, while sports betting revenue was 4 percent better at $4.7 million, however total average gross daily revenue fell 1 percent in the 4 weeks ended 28 April to $1.75 million. A company statement said this reflects the start of the seasonally quiet period of the year, which has seen slightly weaker poker returns, but a better than expected casino business.
"As we enter the seasonally quiet period of the year, the business is performing well and there are a number of exciting developments in prospect," said CEO Mitch Garber. "Over the next few months we will open our licensed Italian business, introduce a number of new branded online slot machines, and launch a completely new product vertical."
"We remain confident about the group's prospects for the full year," he added.
London analysts did not appear to fully share the optimism. Arbuthnot analyst Paul Leyland said: "They are down in absolute terms in the beginning of the second quarter, which means that their full-year revenue is going to look like a bit of a struggle." Numis analyst Richard Carter said Party's trading update was "slightly disappointing" overall, but he reiterated his company's "buy" recommendation for the stock.
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