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One of the most famous iGaming operators, 888 Holdings, has reported rather poor results for its flagship online poker brand. 888poker seems to have been in some trouble after the first half-year results proved to be not up to the adequate standard and the company officially acknowledging that matters need to improve.

888’s Worst Year on Record

The slump in the operational results of 888 Holdings in Q1 of 2018 was quite palpable. With 28% loss of the total value of their operations, the company had a lot of explaining to do to its shareholders. It was mostly poker, though, that saw a “challenging first half” as the company’s own earnings call report described the situation.

888 Holdings has, however, gradually been slipping insofar as profits were concerned. Back in 2017, the company registered another 7.7% drop. True, these results aren’t frightening in their own right, but when you consider that it has been a trend since 2014, then that paints a slightly different picture of a company that is indeed in trouble.

But trouble may be too harsh a word. Meanwhile, other sectors and assets of 888 have been noticing a steadfast decrease of its core market in the United Kingdom, where the company has sworn to restore its clout. Some, though, now suggest that 888 has its eye more firmly fixed on the United States where the market is green and it can benefit from the expertise of a company of its rank, experience and financial heft.

A lot has influenced the present results though, and that wasn’t a chance occurrence.

Hard to Play Poker when Betting Is the Fad

The FIFA World Cup has definitely brought in a lot of challenge for the poker segment. Amateurs decided to temporarily shift their attention to the planets largest football derby, which saw card rooms reporting low on their revenues. Soccer has proven a double-edged sword for most of the people involved in the poker business.

But this has not quite been the entire reason for poker’s gradual loss of clout. In Europe alone, there have been quite a few reasons to be happy. For instance, Portugal, Spain and France now share liquidity, but this has hardly been enough for the continent to stave off some of the most stringent anti-gambling and by extension – anti poker rules on the market. Take Italy’s anti-advertisement ban and you immediately get a picture of a place where poker has to deal with quite a few challenges.

888 has always been an outlier, but he has been faced by some of the most serious competition to date. PokerStars and partypoker have both started ramping up their spending and despite a few flops, the platforms have kept steadfastly at innovating their portfolios.

Admittedly, PokerStars may have gone over the top with their own goals, flopping at least two products this year and they are now working on a virtual reality poker, which, unlike the previous innovation, will bring the tested formula in a new wrapping – which is what makes marketing work for the most part.