888 Holdings, the online gambling company, has reported record full-year revenues of $331m, boosted by increasing numbers of internet poker players.
The company said that bumper performances in its online poker and casino divisions saw overall revenue to the end of 2011 increase 26 per cent. That was buoyed by a 28 per cent increase in fourth-quarter revenue to $91m compared with the same period in 2010.
Brian Mattingley, 888’s deputy chairman, said that he was “delighted” with the results, which have helped the company’s share price double since September.
The company said that full-year poker revenues increased 58 per cent to $61m while online casino revenue was up 27 per cent to $148m.
However, Ivor Jones, an analyst at Numis, said that the company faced an uncertain 2012. “Following excellent recent performance the shares are likely to pause for breath,” he said. “The next 12 months hold some uncertainty, the impact of the Olympics and the Euro 2012 competition on players in particular.”
Paul Leyland, an analyst at Investec, warned that the company, which operates in 25 countries, was “vulnerable” to government tax changes.
Last month shares in 888 Holdings rose 11 per cent after the company announced a deal with US-based Caesars Interactive Entertainment to supply it with an online poker platform.
Online gambling, including poker, is largely banned in the US under federal law, but several London-listed companies have been investing there in anticipation of regulatory change.
888 shares declined by 0.5p, or 0.8 per cent, to 56.7p in late afternoon trading.
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