FEBRUARY 08, 2007
ONLINE casino Lasseters has suffered a 35 per cent slump in first half revenue after changes to gambling laws forced the company to fold its US operations in October last year.
Lasseters also swung into the red in the six months to December 31 as US income dried up and high technology depreciation costs turned a $823,531 net profit a year ago into a $4.9 million loss.
The company’s $7.1 million pre-tax loss included $6.5 million worth of one-off impairment losses. Revenue plunged from $7.8 million a year ago to $4.99 million.
Lasseters’ expenses during the first half of the 2007 financial year included a $1 million investment in its new online gaming platform Orbis, which is due to enter service by the end of March.
The company made 22 staff redundant as it dealt with the impact of US legislation passed in September last year that banned transactions between banks and online gambling sites.
“Lasseters was not the only organisation hit hard by the US legislation. Online casino operators around the world have either embarked on mergers and acquisitions, company sales or close as a result,” Lasseters managing director Peter Bridge wrote the company’s half year accounts.
“Significantly, all the major publicly listed companies concentrating in online gaming have closed their US operations.”
Lasseters finished the half with $1.8 million in cash, down from $2.9 million a year ago.