iGaming Business – French online sports betting recorded a 94% rise in gross profits to €60m during the third quarter of 2014 and was once again the stand out vertical in France’s regulated igaming market.

Quarterly figures published by regulator ARJEL showed that amounts staked rose 35% during the quarter to €245m, compared with €182m over the same period in 2013.

Sports betting’s strong performance was replicated over the nine-month period from January to September. Stakes were up 34% to €785m on the €584m recorded in 2013.

The leading factors in the vertical’s success were pay-out ratios (excluding bonuses) of 75.5%, down 7,5 points on the 85% paid out during 2013’s third quarter and bookmaker-friendly sporting results. The ratio was down 3 points between January and September to 78%.

Online poker more or less stabilised during the quarter: licensed sites recorded stakes of €1.04bn, a 5% drop on the €1.09bn recorded during the third quarter of 2013. Tournament entry fees were up 1% to €354m on 2013’s €352m while gross profits were down 2% to €57m on 2013’s €58m.