ECONOMY

Greece’s OPAP 2014 profit jumps on new games, cost cuts

Greece’s OPAP, Europe’s second biggest gambling firm based on market value, on Monday reported an annual 41 percent rise in 2014 net profit, boosted by the launch of new games and cost savings.

A six-year recession at home had hurt OPAP in previous years but cost containment by its new management which took over after the firm was fully privatised has helped.

Net profit rose to 199.2 million euros ($216.49 million) last year from 141 million euros in 2013.

The company, which ranks second in Europe after William Hill Plc, said it would pay out a total dividend of 0.45 euros a share, up from 0.25 euros in 2013.

Sales rose 14.7 percent to 4.26 billion euros helped by the launch of new games, including a popular scratch card.

Administrative and distribution costs fell by 11 percent to 135.2 million euros.

OPAP plans to expand into video lotto by rolling out the first bunch of 16,500 machines in the summer, a business which analysts expect will be a growth catalyst in coming years.

[Reuters]