Tue, Jul 17, 2007 - Page 12 News List

FEATURE: Firich wins as casinos, lotteries gain speed in Asia

By Jason Tan  /  STAFF REPORTER

The order, worth NT$3.6 billion, will run over five years, the Chinese-language Apple Daily reported on July 10.

The company refused to comment on the orders.

Despite the high competition, Firich said it found out what it needs to do next to ensure its continued success.

On July 4, the maker signed a pact with Hong Kong-based LottVision Ltd, an operator of lottery solutions, followed, on July 10, by an announcement that it would acquire a 11.3 percent stake in Armarda for S$14 million (NT$647,000) to further boost its sales of POS devices and lottery kiosks in China.

Under the agreement with LottVision, ownership of Wu Sheng Technology Co (伍盛計算機科技) -- Firich's wholly-owned subsidiary in Shanghai making POS systems for the Chinese lottery market -- will be exchanged for a 15 percent to 20 percent stake in LottVision.

As LottVision has started to tap into the sports lottery market in China and other Asian countries, this will be a plus to Firich as it seeks to strengthen its presence across the Taiwan Strait and move into other regional markets, a Concord research note said.

"Selling hardware machines is a one-shot deal and we will have to wait for the orders for replacement in three to five years," Lai said.

But the strategic partnership with LottVision will pave the way for Firich to "gain a share in the lottery operator market as well," he said.

"Operators would gain stable and recurring income from lotteries, which places us one step ahead of our competitors," he said.

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