Finance news sponsored by SBTech

In a record year for the Norwegian state-controlled gaming operator, Norsk Tipping has reported its highest ever annual turnover with NOK10.9 billion (€1.34 billion) for 2009, following strong growth in its interactive channel which saw internet and mobile turnover soar by more than a third versus the previous year.

Shares in Webis Holdings plc fell by nearly a quarter in London yesterday after the company reported a 21% decline in group turnover to £56.4 million for the half year ended November 29th 2009, following a significant reduction in turnover from its fixed odds sportsbook.

Despite a disappointing end to the year with a 3% fall in revenues during the fourth quarter, Playtech Limited has reported total revenues of €114.8 million for the year ended December 31st 2009, an increase of 3% over the previous year, buoyed by strong growth from the company's poker product which saw revenues increase by 12%.

Buoyed by the strongest quarterly performance yet from its growing online casino product, PartyGaming plc has reported a 32% increase in revenues to £132.2 million for the fourth quarter of 2009, with revenues for the full year falling 6% to £446.2 million following disappointing results in poker. PartyGaming's casino product now accounts for 44% of total revenues, just below the contribution from the company's traditionally core poker product.

Continuing to perform in line with management expectations as the company looks to complete the implementation of its new investment programme, mobile gambling specialist Probability plc has reported an 8% fall in net gaming revenues to £1.14 million for the third quarter ended December 31st 2009, despite record bets taken during the month of December.

With total revenues falling by more than a quarter during the 2009 fiscal year, Canada's Chartwell Technology Inc has announced the closure of its Chartwell poker community, PokerNexus, as the company looks to devote its resources to the advancement of its core casino gaming system and the recently launched Chartwell Games Platform.

With the company posting a 4% increase in total net revenue for 2009, William Hill said Wednesday that it has begun the search for a new Chairman following the announcement that Charles Scott will be standing down at the end of this year, after six years at the helm.

Online lottery provider Tipp24 said this week that its insurance company is refusing to pay out on a claim filed in connection with the €31.7 million winning payment which it made last September, causing Tipp24 to again restate its consolidated EBIT forecast for the 2009 fiscal year to €21 million, a drop of €22 million on the previous forecast.

As the company positions itself for further international growth with the acquisition of its white label partner in South Africa, IG Group Holdings plc has reported a 14% increase in trading revenue to £143.8 million for the six month period ended November 30th, with strong growth in overseas markets including Australia, France and Italy.

Leisure & Gaming plc has reported a 12% increase in total net winnings to €6.6 million for the fourth quarter of 2009, following strong growth in the company's Italian poker offering.

Despite poor trading results during the first half of the year, 32Red plc has reported gaming revenues of £12.8 million for 2009, a slight decline of 2% on the previous year, after a second half recovery led by the company's flagship online casino product.