An online casino boss says the global downturn is hitting the numbers of vital “High Roller” players on his sites.

But Victor Chandler said there was no real way to tell how business would be affected by the credit crunch, although he feared the UK market was close to saturation.

“This is the first time we’ve faced a recession as an industry, and it’s going to be interesting,” he told a British newspaper.

Slowed

“So far we’ve not seen that great an effect. We’ve seen no let-up in the smaller bettors, especially over the holidays.

“But the high rollers have slowed down a bit so far.”

While Chandler remains upbeat, in another interview he gave last year he revealed half of his company’s turnover comes from High Rollers.

Plans in the pipeline include a financial spread-betting service, a gambling-based multiplayer online war game and moves to expand further into Europe where he reckons gaming rules will be relaxed in the next few years.

Bribes

And he revealed a new deal with China’s biggest gaming site, Gigamedia, to tap into its database of 85 MILLION players.

Less encouraging was a partnership with a Korean company to provide poker services.

He told The Guardian: “It was all — we thought — above board, but then they lost their licence, because they had paid bribes to get it.

“That was extraordinary, the sign-up rate was the fastest, the site couldn’t cope with it.”






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