PartyGaming, the online gaming company, has seen a massive drop in half-year profits after being forced to end trading in the US. A change in US law last October effectively made it illegal to operate online gambling.
The company, which runs websites such as PartyPoker, reported a pre-tax loss of $47.1m (£23.5m) for the six months to June compared to a pre-tax profit of $320.5m (£159.7m) for the same period last year.
The passing of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act in the US made it illegal to transfer or handle payments from online gambling. Despite the setback, which has seen its share price drop to less than a fifth of its peak in early 2006, the Gibraltar-based company has seen the number of non-US players increase by 83% to 403,713.
Mitch Garber, PartyGaming chief executive, says: “Over the coming weeks and months we expect to announce a number of further important business alliances with leading companies around the world that will help us to promote and grow our business.”