888 Proves Resilient during H1 2007

10 September 2007

After losing roughly 60 percent of its revenue to the U.S. I-gaming prohibition last October, 888's interim results, released this morning, indicate that the company is well on its way to recovery.

Less than two weeks after announcing its exit from the U.S. market, 888's Israel-based research and development arm, Random Logic, was forced to cut 29 jobs, reducing its workforce by roughly 7 percent. Another cutback followed at the company's Gibraltar headquarters resulting in a 25 percent total reduction in the company's workforce.

Nearly a year later, the company reported a pre-tax profit from continuing operations (non-U.S.) of $19 million, a 298 percent increase over the H2 2006, owing its success to record turnover in the period.

Furthermore, to supplement its financial recovery, 888 made several significant agreements with companies that have helped boost its position in Europe--its new focus since leaving the United States.

In a separate announcement this morning, the company said it had signed a deal to provide software and technology to Latin American poker site Tower Torneos, strengthening its position in the region.

Meanwhile, 888 CEO Gigi Levy told Reuters to expect another 20 agreements with other companies, particularly one that would increase the company's presence in the Asia-Pacific region.

He added that the company is in advanced talks with two acquisition targets, but would not reveal their identities.

Regarding 888's well-publicized interest in launching a European sports book, the company is reportedly close to finalizing a deal with Blue Square operator Rank Group for that purpose.

On news of the results, 888 closed down 1.25p on the London Stock Exchange to 119.25.