OPAP to launch VLTs by the end of March

Kathimerini English - - Focus -

OPAP, Europe’s fourth-big­gest bet­ting firm, will launch video lot­tery ter­mi­nals (VLTs) from the end of the first quar­ter next year, it said yes­ter­day. OPAP’s prof­itabil­ity has been sapped in re­cent years by an aus­ter­ity tax Greece im­posed on its rev­enue to bol­ster state fi­nances un­der the terms of in­ter­na­tional bailouts. OPAP had planned to launch the ma­chines last year but halted the project after Greece unexpectedly in­tro­duced tougher bet­ting rules. The com­pany un­froze the project this month after Greece’s gam­ing com­mis­sion ap­proved new, less rigid reg­u­la­tions. An­a­lysts see the new busi­ness as a cat­a­lyst for the com­pany’s fu­ture growth. OPAP will roll out some 16,500 ma­chines in the next 18 months at ex­ist­ing and newly set-up outlets, chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Damian Cope said in a call to an­a­lysts. “The over­all de­ploy­ment of legally li­censed VLTs is a brand-new de­vel­op­ment for both OPAP and the Greek mar­ket, so we will be an­a­lyz­ing our per­for­mance care­fully as we go along,” he said.

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