Profitable 888 Reinstates Dividend


LONDON -- Online casino operator 888 Holdings (LSE: 888.L) has reinstated its dividend after swinging back into a profit for the first six months of the year.

888 Holdings, which runs virtual poker and bingo games on the Internet, said it made a pre-tax profit of $18.4 million in the first half compared to a loss of $22.1 million last year. Sales rose 21% to $22.8 million driven by a 72% jump in poker revenues to $41 million.

The company said: "This has been an excellent first half of the year. The tremendous increase in customer numbers caused by the improvements in our product offering has led to these record results, with the highest revenues in the history of 888."

888 Holdings added: "On the back of this performance, the Board has decided to reinstate the interim dividend, while we retain the cash necessary to continue growing the company."

The company is pinning its strategy for growth on Spain. It said: "The second half of the year will see increased investment in Spain, where we will attempt to build on our impressive market share, and also in the United States, where we are preparing for regulatory changes."

888 Holdings is penciled in for full-year profits of $38 million, which values the 282 million-pound company at around 12 times earnings. The forecast yield based on this morning's share price of 83 pence is around 1%.

888 Holdings has been a disappointing investment over the last six years. Investors have suffered a capital loss of some 34% even after dividends have been included.

If you are keen to avoid poor returns, this free Motley Fool report -- "10 Steps To Making A Million In The Market" -- could help you on your way. The report highlights how choppy markets can still provide the big winners to take you to that magic million.

Further Motley Fool investment opportunities

The article Profitable 888 Reinstates Dividend originally appeared on

David does not own shares in 888 Holdings.The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

Copyright © 1995 - 2012 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.