32 percent increase in fourth quarter revenues aided by two acquisitions and strong casino performance

Online gambling giant Party Gaming reported a 32 percent increase in fourth quarter revenues.

Gibraltar-based Party said sales rose to US$132.2 million in the three months to December 31 from $100.4 million in the same period in 2008, helped by two acquisitions and a particularly strong performance from the casino division.

Finance Director Martin Weigold cautioned that such a large increase is not sustainable going into 2010. But the company still expects to report double-digit revenues and profit growth in the year, he said, adding that the company expects to exceed the market consensus of $132 million in 2010 EBITDA.

The company also reversed 18 months of quarter-on-quarter revenue declines for its poker division, as revenues rose 9 percent in the quarter to $49.1 million.

“With some of the world’s largest gaming sites in poker, casino and bingo, and opportunities to further consolidate the online gaming sector, we are confident about our future prospects,” said Chief Executive Jim Ryan.

Party has held talks with a number of companies over possible consolidation, including Austria’s bwin. Analysts expect a wave of M&A activity among online gaming groups over the coming year.