Earlier this week a 888 Holdings, operators of a major online gambling site 888 poker have confirmed that they are in for the purchase of Bwin.Party, which has been on the market since November last year. 888 Holdings have officially announced that they are interested in attaining one of the leading betting sites out there and that it would be a sensible business move. Things got spiced up when Amaya group decided to partner up with GVC Holdings and join the bidding, while there are rumors that Playtech might enter the race too.
A Win-Win Deal
According to the official statement of Gibraltar-based 888 Holding “a combination of 888 and bwin.party, will benefit both companies and all shareholders”. This “combination” is roughly estimated to the total value of over €1 billion. According to the Guardian some analyses show that “a merged group would be able to cut fixed costs such as licensing in regulated markets and marketing spending.” Nevertheless, the outcome of this business proposal is yet uncertain as Bwin have confirmed that they received a number of offers and that currently they are in the process of reviewing the proposals and considering different business possibilities.
Rivals Join The Race
UK gaming group GVC, who operate gaming sites such as partypoker, partycasino and FoxyBingo have already made their proposal but now they will team up with Amaya to make a joint offer which might just outbid 888 Holding. Canadian Amaya Gaming bought PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker in a package deal of $4.9 billion last year.
Other expected buyers Playtech and William Hill are still silent and seemingly indifferent in this offer but anything can be expected in the future of this sale. Interestingly, earlier this year William Hill made a move on buying precisely the potential buyers from this story, 888 but the negotiations did not come to a successful conclusion as their proposal of £720 million was turned down by 888 majority shareholder.
Bwin.Party was created in 2011 when Bwin, which offers sports betting, was merged with PartyGaming, which operates Online Casinos and Online Poker sites including PartyPoker. Despite being one of the leading online gambling operators they have seen a revenue decrease for the third year in a row which is the most likely reason for the decision to put Bwin.Party up for sale.