lowers full-year estimates, close to selling Win social gaming division

bwin-party-win-social-gaming-saleUK-listed online gambling operator digital entertainment has warned investors that its full year revenue will come in below previous estimates after what it calls “exceptionally weak gross win margin in sports betting.” The company says bet volumes and active player numbers are about what they expected but punter-friendly results, particularly in December, have given its Q4 numbers a drubbing. shares closed out Tuesday’s trading up 1.5% to 116.2p.

Full year results won’t be officially made public until March 10 but says it now expects total revenue to be in the range of €608 to €612m, down from estimates of €618m to €630m. The company says it expects 2014’s clean earnings margin of between 16% and 17%.’s regulated online gambling operation in New Jersey is expected to drag earnings down by €10m while its Win social gaming division is expected to cut earnings by €7m.

Speaking of Win, also announced it was in “active discussions regarding the sale” of its social gaming operation and “expect to make a further announcement shortly.” In November, confirmed that it was having “preliminary discussions with a number of interested parties” regarding “a variety of potential business combinations.” At the time, names like Amaya Gaming and Playtech were bandied about as tire-kickers. Amaya has previously stated its intent of diversifying its new PokerStars toy into social gaming and sports betting by 2015.

As for any larger acquisition and/or selling off parts of itself, said Tuesday it was “continuing its discussions with several parties” regarding those aforementioned ‘business combinations.’ The hunt remains for someone who knows the secret for combining and profits.

Bwin investor Jason Ader, who led a savage proxy war with Bwin management earlier this year, couldn’t hide his disgust with Bwin’s earnings warning. In an email to Bloomberg, Ader said Bwin’s management team “should be embarrassed by these results given the strong performance of Bwin’s peers. The board as a collective, and its chairman are not holding management accountable for loss of market share, poor expense management and business underperformance. The time for change at Bwin is long overdue.”