Friday 30 September 2016

Losses hit $10m at web betting firm Seaniemac

Published 18/08/2016 | 02:30

Seaniemac is an online betting group founded by Sean McEniff. File photo: Depositphotos
Seaniemac is an online betting group founded by Sean McEniff. File photo: Depositphotos

Online betting group Seaniemac, founded by Sean McEniff, the son of Donegal hotelier and former GAA player Brian McEniff, is in talks with potential investors after its accumulated losses hit almost $10m (€8.8m).

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The stock market minnow is listed on the over-the-counter market in the United States, and counts Rina and Diana Chernaya, daughters of Russian aluminium businessman Michael Chernaya, among its investors.

Seaniemac has warned that if it can't raise any additional cash that it may cease operating.

Mr McEniff is no longer directly involved in running the business and no longer remains a shareholder of the group.

He was initially chief executive, then chairman of the company, before stepping aside in 2014 to concentrate on the family's hotel business.

The latest quarterly report from Seaniemac International shows that the group generated gross gaming revenue of $218,456 in the three months ended in June. That compared to $45,910 in the quarter to the end of June last year.

But expenses soared to almost $517,000 in the last quarter from $107,000, while its interest expense, including the amortisation of loan costs, also jumped. It rose to $586,000 from just under $71,0000.

That left the group nursing a $911,000 loss for the quarter and brought its accumulated losses since Seaniemac's launch in 2013 to more than $9.4m.

The company targets customers in Ireland and the UK.

Until this year, it used a white-label betting system provided by Boyle Sports. But that contract has now ended. Seaniemac intends to launch a new betting platform next month.

Seaniemac.com now redirects customers to another gambling site, Apollobet.com.

Seaniemac agreed to pay $2m this year to buy Apollo Betting and Gaming in the UK.

Apollo was owned by businessman Paul Antrobus.

Apollobet.com also uses the Boylesports platform.

In the year to the end of March 2015, Apollo Betting and Gaming made a £260,000 loss.

Seaniemac said it's in talks with potential investors to help bankroll its own continuing operations, adding that the group is likely to incur losses and negative cash flow for the foreseeable future.

"Management intends to finance operating costs over the next 12 months with existing cash on hand, loans from stockholders and directors, and a possible private placement of our securities," according to its latest set of results.

However, it said that it can give no assurance that ongoing talks with a potential investor will be successful. "The company continues to explore various financing alternatives, including debt and equity financings and strategic partnerships, as well as trying to generate additional revenue," it added.

"If the company is unable to obtain additional funding and improve its operations, the company's financial operations may be materially adversely affected and the company may not be able to continue operations," it warned.

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