Despite expectations being lowered across the board for the United States’ online gambling market, it hasn’t prevented some companies from turning a decent profit. Delaware, Nevada and New Jersey aren’t the exclusive homes to many of the brands giving their names to U.S. sites, after all. And even if partnerships with well-established names like Borgata, Caesars and Trump help fuel an American presence, companies like partypoker and 888 still conduct business across the world. And for 888 Holdings, their entry into the newly regulated U.S. market helped cap off a highly profitable 2013.
Profits on the Rise
The company behind 888poker announced a seven percent increase in revenue from last year’s $375.8 million to $400.5 million through the financial year ending December 31, 2013. That gain was due to a 15 percent increase in casino revenue and a 7 percent increase in poker revenue. 888 Holdings saw a 30 percent increase in pre-tax profits to $53.2 million. The company’s bingo market revenue dropped 16 percent to $43.7 million.
CEO Brian Mattingley said the profitable 2013 year was due to the company’s increased emphasis on branding and new marketing campaigns. Software updates and the development of new mobile products also contributed towards the company’s exponential growth.
The end of 2013 saw 888 recognized not only for an increase in profits, but for award-winning services. At the 2013 e-Gaming Review Operator Awards in London, 888.com won multiple “Operator of the Year” awards, including their third straight win as “Poker Operator of the Year” and the third time taking home the “Casino Operator of the Year” award.
Coming to America
Though regulation is still relatively new territory for the U.S., it’s nothing new for 888. Their entrance into American markets provided a notable boost to revenue. The company offers poker, casino, bingo and more, and saw the number of customer accounts grow to 15.5 million in 2013 – an increase of 19 percent.
888 Holdings is the only online gambling company to offer services in all three U.S. regulated markets. Partnering with Caesars Interactive Entertainment, 888’s casino and poker offerings created a tight race in New Jersey’s highly competitive market; in fact, Caesars and 888 have fought tooth and nail with partypoker and Borgata to be market leader. In February, only three percentage points of revenue separated the two sides from being tied in a dead heat.
In fact, the online gambling market has helped buffer an overall revenue decline of New Jersey’s land-based casinos. The 11 Atlantic City casinos took in $199 million in revenue in February, with $10.3 million being made in online gaming, offsetting a decline from $212 million in casino revenue from February 2013.
Shares of Wealth
Mattingley also gave credit to 888’s momentum in Spain, where the company is in a market-leading position. 888’s increase in poker revenue advanced them to second place in PokerScout’s global rankings by the end of 2013. With a seven-day average of 2,300 players, the company is right behind PokerStars in cash game traffic. An increased focus on sports betting has also yielded good results for 888.
2014 is seeing 888’s average daily revenue reach more than 8 percent. In going forward, Mattingley is confident about what lies in store for the company. After their strong year, the company will pay a final dividend of 4 cents a share, less than the previous year. Once 888 Holding’s financial results were revealed, shares in the company rose by 13 percent from 135.6p to 148p.