French operators cut losses by 50% in 2012

1 August 2013

Poker and betting operators licensed in France are still operating at a loss but managed to cut their operational losses by 50% to €85m during 2012, the French igaming regulator ARJEL announced on Wednesday 31 July.

France’s regulatory body said operating results for the whole sector remained negative but losses had been cut by 50% and represented 12% of operators’ gross gaming revenues in 2012 against 27% in 2011.

Most of the cost cutting had been done through significant reductions in marketing and sponsorship spend by the operators, in particular the online poker and sports betting sites.

The three licensed verticals fared as follows:

- Online sports betting made up 47% of the losses, with operators recording overall operating losses of €40m,

- Online poker made up 42% of the losses, with operators recording overall operating losses of €36m,

- Online horse racing pari mutuel made up 11% of the losses, with operators recording overall operating losses of €10m.

Operating losses totalled €85m in 2012, compared with €183m in 2011. ARJEL added that on an individual basis, some operators had generated operating profits in 2012.

The reduced losses originate mainly from a 60% reduction to €59m in marketing activity by the online poker and betting sectors during 2012, the former seeing numerous new entrants shut down last summer. This enabled the poker sector to make savings of €53m, online sports betting losses reduced costs by €34m and horse racing pari mutuel by €11m.