Friday, May 11, 2012 : SPORTECH TRADING UPDATE
 
e-Gaming a star performer
 
Pool and tote gaming company Sportech PLC released an upbeat trading update Friday.
 
Key indicators include:
 
–     Net bank debt in the four months to 30 April 2012 has decreased by GBP 4.2 million to GBP 55.0 million, following the GBP 13.0 million reduction in 2011.
 
–     Solid advances with predominantly North American-based gaming business Sportech Racing.
 
–     Retail betting venues and telephone betting business shows good progress reporting betting handle (turnover) up 4.5 percent on last year, which the company boasts is double the industry average.
 
–     Total betting turnover at the Kentucky Derby yielded $ 4 million – an all time high for the Connecticut operation and 11 percent up on the previous year.
 
–     The Tote Services arm of the company reports good progress made in Interactive Products and Services, with several contracts in the pipeline.
 
–     Football Pools division is performing in line with expectation and expansion continues with a retail distribution deal with Stan James.
 
–     eGaming business reports a gross win revenue up 30 percent year on year attributed in part to the migration of Littlewoods Casino and Poker business to the Playtech platform along with the launch of Vernons Casino and Poker towards the end of 2011.
 
–     The firm's bingo product will transfer to the Playtech platform later this year.
 
–     Date set for the Group's VAT claim to be heard at the First Tier Tax Tribunal in October 2012
 
Roger Withers, non-executive chairman of Sportech PLC, comments:  "Trading for the current financial year has started well and we are pleased to report that the Group is performing in line with the Board's expectations with operational progress being made in all areas of our business.
 
"The Group continues to prepare for the forthcoming anticipated regulatory change in the key international jurisdictions in which the Group trades and accordingly, we believe Sportech will be ideally positioned to benefit from the opportunities that these changes will deliver.  We look forward to the future with confidence."
 
In related news, Sportech announced the resignation with immediate effect of its executive director responsible for business development, Brooks Pierce, who is leaving to pursue other business interests.
 
The company's North American business announced the promotion of Dave Haslett to Managing Director of Sportech Racing (Worldwide), Ted Taylor to Managing Director of Sportech Venues and Andrew Gaughan to Managing Director of Sportech Interactive Products and Services.  Gaughan will additionally take on the role of Business Development Director, North America.
 
Sportech has tasked executive search business Odgers Berndtson to find suitable candidates that will further strengthen the Sportech executive board in light of "the many opportunities available in North America".