World Poker Tour Sold To Chinese Company For $35 MillionJune 23, 2015 5:53 am
Bwin.party is currently the target of a $1.5 billion takeover bid by either 888 Holdings, or a partnership involving Amaya Gaming and GVC Holdings. While talks continue, Bwin.party has announced that it has now agreed to sell its poker events business, the World Poker Tour, to Chinese social gaming company Ourgame Holdings for the cash sum of $35 million. According to a Bwin.party statement, however, the WPT unit was a “non-core asset of the group” and would therefore in no way affect the current acquisition talks with potential bidders. As the statement continues:
“[The sale] is wholly consistent with the group’s increased focus on our real money gaming and technology business.”
Each year, the WPT organizes 70 tournaments around the globe and despite generating €10.4 million in revenues in 2014, it eventually reported losses of $4.1 million. Nevertheless, the brand is mostly seen as a user acquisition tool with the company broadcasting its tournaments to 150 countries around the world. The WPT’s high visibility and reach is therefore seen as the primary reason Ourgame has acquired the brand, as up until now the company has specialized in providing internet card-based games in China, while with the WPT Ourgame it is hoping to move a step closer to creating a globally recognized social gaming brand.
Presently, Ourgame has around 30 million active users each month, and last year reported $76.7 million in revenues, giving the company a market valuation of $700 million. Furthermore, Ourgame has no capital problem,” and as Global Poker Index CEO Alexandre Dreyfus, explains:
“They can invest into World Poker Tour and develop a strong [social gaming] offer. While we are waiting online poker, as we know it, to be regulated in U.S., something is getting ready in Asia. That’s where the next poker wave could come from.”