EXPENSIVE ONLINE GAMBLING DISAGREEMENT
29th December, 2011 at 03:01:36
Stanley International says current losses are partly attributable to dispute with company's founder
The Liverpool Daily Post reports that a disagreement between Liverpool land and online gaming firm Stanley International Betting and the estate of its founder, Lord Steinberg, has contributed to an annual pre-tax loss of more than £ 3.4 million.
The company's latest full year accounts show that the company had to take a charge of almost £ 2 million due to the dispute.
Adding to the company's woes, it was also impacted by "unfavourable" sporting results that saw pre-tax losses for the year of £ 3.45 million against a profit of almost £ 2.6 million in 2009.
Formerly known as Stanley Leisure, the company sold off its UK betting shops and casinos in 2005 and 2006, and now operates betting shops across mainland Europe. The company was founded in 1955 by Leonard Steinberg, who inherited an illegal betting shop from his father.
He later became Lord Steinberg and turned Stanley into one of the UK's most successful gaming companies.
Lord Steinberg died in late 2009, aged 73, but his estate is involved in a dispute with the company over one of its subsidiaries - Stanleybet UK Investments, which along with other Stanley subsidiaries, owns a 67% stake in a Polish betting shop operation called Star Typ Sport.
Stanley had been in negotiations with Lord Steinberg's estate over the future financing and ownership of the company.
After the negotiations failed to reach a conclusion, Stanleybet UK Investments was placed into liquidation. However, the dispute continues with Lord Steinberg's estate having brought a legal claim against Stanley.
The annual report disclosed: "Although the directors are confident of successfully defending the claim, they consider it appropriate given the circumstances to make provision against the claim in the year."
Aside from the dispute, Stanley International Betting made good progress, recording annual turnover up 24 percent, to more than £ 394 million despite the challenging economic conditions in Europe.
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