ditches deal with 888 and accepts offer from GVC

GVC Übernahme
The wedding had already been planned, but then the bride ran away with someone else. The billion dollar takeover deal between and 888 got cancelled. now favours a counter offer from GVC. 888 has announced to withdraw from the bidding process. We analyse what the huge gambling merger means for us poker players.

After had announced that the company was open for acquisition offers, 888 and a consortium of GVC and Amaya were the two most serious bidders. In July 2015, the board officially announced that it favoured a £898 Million offer from 888 over a £908 Million offer from GVC and Amaya.

The deal seemed to be sealed for 888. But only a few weeks later, GVC made an even higher offer for – now without the help of Amaya (the company behind PokerStars and Full Tilt). GVC increased the offer several times. In early September, 888 itself submitted a revised takeover offer. But only a few days later, the board agreed to a buyout offer from GVC of 1.1 billion pounds. And 888 confirmed that the company would no longer be in discussions regarding the acquisition of

If there is no other unexpected twist, will be a part of GVC. What would this mean for you as a poker player? Other than Amaya and 888, GVC does not have a well-known name among poker players. The company is being operated from the Isle of Man and is listed at the London Stock Exchange. The company is running two sports betting brands, “Sportingbet” and “Betboo” and the online casino brand “Casino Club”. But what about poker? When bidding for together with Amaya, everything seemed to make sense: Poker for Amaya, Sportsbetting for GVC. A scenario, that would have made the world’s no.1 poker company even more powerful. Which would’ve led to less competition, which would’ve been bad from a customer’s point of view. Officially, GVC made its £1.1 billion offer without the help of Amaya. But there are “rumors that Amaya is still involved behind the scenes”, writes gambling expert Rafi Farber of Calvin Ayre in todays blog post.

But even if GVC sticks to keeping all the assets for itself, there is a risk that bwin poker and Partypoker will not survive in the long term. A merger is always a risk – the one of bwin and Partygaming didn’t turn out well, either. Other than 888, GVC needed to borrow a large amount of money in order to be able to make such a generous offer. So we need to keep our fingers crossed for them.

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Josh Miller Josh Miller

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