Austrian sports betting group BetandWin this week released its annual financial report for 2002 and in doing so broke the news to shareholders that its net loss rose from EU12.9 million to EU13.4 million and its negative EBIT could be reduced from EU13.4 to EU11.2 million.
The EBITDA was negative EU6.4 million from negative EU10.3 million in the preceding year. In the fourth quarter, for the first time, a positive EBITDA was obtained of EU169,000. In the same period in 2001 it was EU2,368 million.
Karen Klein, a spokeswoman for the company, said management couldn't give any prognoses for this year's financial results.
BetandWin.com Interactive Entertainment AG was established in Austria in 1999 and was brought to the Austrian Stock Exchange in 2000. Its first day of trading was March 27, 2000. In June 2001, the company took over AG Simon Bold (Gibraltar) Ltd., which was then renamed named BAW International Ltd.
Simon Bold, has more than 26 years experience in the international betting industry. As founder and main shareholder of Liverpool-based Mawdsley Bookmakers (with more than 40 betting offices, 200 employees and a yearly turnover of more than EU32 million), he was the first to introduce large-scale betting via "debit card" in 1989. In 1991, he sold most of his bookmaking business to the listed company Stanley Leisure PLC. Simon Bold is now the managing director for BAW International Ltd.
BAW International Ltd., which operates www.betandwin.com, has European sports betting and casino licenses issued in Gibraltar under the official supervision of the government of Gibraltar.
BetandWin claims that every day some 2,000 bets on more than 15 different sports are made and that it has a customer base of 400,000 coming from 200 different countries. According to BetandWin's press information, the world's first, fully integrated (into a telco billing system) SMS betting service for real money bets was launched by the company in June 2002.
BAW International Ltd. was granted an annually renewable license (license No. 5) in Gibraltar for the negotiation of sports bets at fixed odds. The company also holds a license (limited to five years, for the time being) for the operation of an online casino based on the license for the offer and negotiation of sports bets granted in 1999.
A license for the professional placement and closure of sports bets was granted by the government of Vienna (License Notification 1a 521/1/98) in accordance to Federal Law No. 620 of Nov. 28, 1989 (pertaining to the organization of games of chance). Internet sports betting does not fall under the definition of games of chance and are allowed in each of the nine Austrian Provinces pursuant to provincial competence and subject to compliance with respective requirements.