March 13, 2014 / 7:36 AM / in 4 years sees return to growth this year

LONDON, March 13 (Reuters) - Online gambling company Bwin.Party said it was on track for a return to growth this year after problems in Greece and a shift away from riskier markets hit earnings in 2013.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amorisation fell to 108 million euros ($150.17 million) in 2013 from 164.9 million the previous year because of falling revenue, increased gaming taxes in Germany and start-up costs in New Jersey.

“Having streamlined the shape and size of our business we now have the foundations to return our business to sustainable growth,” Chief Executive Norbert Teufelberger said in a statement.

Bwin.Party is concentrating on better regulated markets and is expanding in the United States as gambling rules are relaxed there.

The profit figure was in line with expectations. The company said in November that a block on access to online gambling sites in Greece would hit annual revenue and profit, adding to the decline caused by the strategy of focusing on fewer markets.

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