Arena Leisure announces a return to profit for the first half of the year

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The racecourse and racing channel operator reported a pre-tax profit of 2m, compared to a loss of 0.5m in 2004, on turnover increased 12% to 20.2m.

The racecourse division has delivered an operating profit of 4.2m, 13% ahead of last year, while At The Races continues to make strong progress and is on track to deliver profits in 2006.

ATR has successfully launched its online \’Bet and Watch\’ product, enabling online punters to watch a race live having placed a bet. The service is already live with Ladbrokes, Bet365, Paddy Power and Boylesports.

ATR has also become the world\’s first sports channel to have introduced a live, daily interactive 3G service. The channel is streamed live to the 3G handset and users can also place a bet with William Hill.

Arena Leisure is currently the UK\’s number one operator of racing fixtures, hosting approximately 27% of all racing in the UK.