Sportech\’s growth strategy focused on new media betting

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The Liverpool-based betting group (Littlewoods BetDirect) increased turnover by 50% in 2004, to a record £497m, and reported a loss of £800,000, compared with a £3.5m profit the year before.

Betting turnover and gross win increased respectively 77% and 68% in the period. Active customers were 18,900, up 52%.

The company has just completed the first year of the exclusive interactive betting and gaming partnership with ITV.

Current developments are focusing on the integration of betting and gaming propositions within ITV programming, including night-time poker and soft casino games.

“We are confident that the review undertaken in early 2005 will focus the business on its core profit generating divisions and will deliver significant cost savings over the year. The 2004 results demonstrate that we have made good progress in the Betting division, which is on track to deliver profits in 2005,  and the Football Pools business continues to deliver substantial cash flow. We  remain optimistic about the long-term opportunities for growth in the interactive market which is underpinned by our continuing strong relationship with ITV,” said Roger Withers, Sportech\’s Acting Managing Director.