Sportech Interims Released

Not the best year, but strategic goals are being achieved

UK sports betting group Sportech plc has published its H1-2015 numbers, which although not financially stellar, do show that strategic goals are being achieved.
The company reported:
* Revenues down at GBP 51 million (Q2-2014 : GBP 52 million);
* EBITDA down at GBP 11 million (Q2-2014 : GBP12 million);
* Pre-tax profit down at GBP 5.4 million (Q2-2014 : GBP6.3 million);
* Net debt reduced to GBP 63.3 million (Q2-2014 : GBP 66.7 million;
* US strategic investments delivered value with disposal of online SNG interests in New Jersey for a pre-tax gain of GBP 8.1 million;
* Statutory profit before tax up by GBP 7.1 million to GBP 7.9 million (excluding the 2014 gain from Spot the Ball VAT claim which was subsequently reversed);
* US investment in technology securing new B2B customers, growing online betting in Connecticut and expanding position in professional sports raffles via Bump 50:50;
* UK – Football Pools modernisation plan on track, with stabilisation of subscription revenues in H1 (now accounts for more than 85 percent of customers);
* Offer to purchase received from Contagious Gaming mid-August;
* The group's GBP 97 million refund of VAT appeal will be heard on November 3 this year
CEO Ian Penrose said the company continues to invest in the highly regulated business it has built in the USA and the UK.
"We are now well positioned to build upon our unique position, based on our regulated racing and pools operations. Examples include the highly successful replacement of Betfred's Totepool entire hardware and software betting systems, and the realisation of a significant profit on our early online initiatives in New Jersey.
"Our industry is currently experiencing a period of considerable consolidation, and we continue to explore all options to deliver strategic value for our shareholders. We remain confident in the underlying strength of the business."

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