Football Pools owner Sportech shoots for expansion in the US

POOLS and horseracing bookie Sportech is planning to make greater strides in the nascent US online gambling market by launching online betting in Connecticut in the next few weeks.

The British company, which operates the Pools, the UK’s oldest football betting institution, will launch the service after winning an exclusive licence to operate online horse betting in the state.

Yesterday, Sportech revealed middling annual results, with revenues and profits falling due to the closure of certain parts of the business and other one-off costs.

Profit before tax fell from £8m to £2.1m, although with one off costs stripped out, they were flat on the previous year.

Chief executive Ian Penrose said that half of revenues now come from North America, and that Sportech is primed to take advantage of a liberalising market.

“We consider that our activities in the North American market, exposure to other regulated gaming markets worldwide and strengthened management team have positioned the group well to take advantage of the opportunities ahead,” he said.