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Revenue Figures For 888 Holdings Suggest Online Poker Is Popular

Online poker was one of the fastest growing hobbies in the world last year when a US Department of Justice indictment of three of the largest online poker sites in the world slowed the growing process for the popular game. Revenue figures released this week by 888 Holdings for 2011 suggest that despite the indictments, online poker is as popular as ever.

In 2011, revenue for 888 Holdings was $331 million. The company suggested that the 26% increase over the previous year were a reflection of a steadily growing online poker presence. The company's online poker has become one of the top draws when it comes to gambling, and that has been the case for many online gaming sites in recent years.

Despite the strong figures from 2011, analysts are warning that the next year may not be as rosy for 888. Several factors could be key to whether or not 888 can maintain their current growth rate, according to Ivor Jones, and analyst at Numis.

"Following excellent recent performance the shares are likely to pause for breath," said Jones. "The next 12 months hold some uncertainty, the impact of the Olympics and the Euro 2012 competition on players in particular."

Online gambling companies, including 888, are preparing for a possible explosion of action in the US. The DoJ released an opinion in December, overturning a previously held belief that all online gambling was illegal in the country. The DoJ ruling clarified that only sports betting is illegal under the Wire act.

In the months since the ruling, foreign companies have been partnering with US-based companies in order to form a union that they believe will help land them a gaming license when they become available. Nevada has already started taking applications for online casino licenses, and most analysts agree the licenses will go to existing land-based casino operators in the state.

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