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Trinity Mirror and PA sell

LONDON - UKbetting, the internet betting group, has bought the online sports website from its joint owners, Trinity Mirror and the Press Association, in a deal valued at £1m.

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UKbetting will pay only a token £2 for the site, but will have to invest around £1m to pay off debts, which transfer with the site.

The deal is the second in a matter of weeks for AIM-listed UKbetting, which recently acquired affinity credit card firm Sportscard.

Trinity Mirror has been keen to offload the site, which takes its name from the defunct newspaper, for some time. The business, which trades as PA SportingLife, is believed to have incurred heavy losses in its four years of operation. In the first half of this year alone, it is believed to have lost £3.3m.

As part of the deal, UKbetting will also acquire the online betting operation, which operates in association with the government-owned bookmaker the Tote.

The sale is part of an ongoing reorganisation of Trinity Mirror's new-media operations. It has already dramatically scaled backed its activity and recently announced that it was to cut back its large online regional newspaper internet operations, which operation under the IC banner.

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