---ADDS SHARE PRICE---
The progress of Netplay TV (LON:NPT) was derailed somewhat by the introduction of the new point of consumption tax that has been levied on all online gaming.
The company, which hosts roulette on ITV, Channel 5 and Sky, reported a year-on-year £1mln slide in adjusted pre-tax profit in the first half, which fell to £1.1mln.
By contrast, betting duties in the six months to June rose to £1.9mln from £400,000 in the second half of 2014 and £100,000 a year ago.
To mitigate the impact, the group cut its marketing expenses by 24% to £5.9mln, it also very excited by the £3.2mln acquisition of Otherside Inc, a digital marketing firm that has been bought to help increase its customer base.
Being profitable, the new business will also have a positive impact on earnings when the next results are published.
“We're excited about the opportunities that the acquisition of Otherside brings to the group initially providing a profitable revenue stream whilst adding to our capability in driving traffic to NetPlay's brands once the integration is complete,” said chief executive Bjarke Larsen.
“This alongside the group's solid marketing performance and opportunistic acquisition strategy supported by a robust cash position gives us confidence for the year ahead and beyond."
Netplay is currently sitting on £15.8mln of cash – which represents more than half the firm’s market capitalisation.
Despite the decline in profitability, the firm maintained its dividend at 0.22p a share.
The shares, up 35% in the year to date, marked time at 9.75p.