888 Consolidates US iPoker Dominance After Bwin.party Deal

888 Consolidates US iPoker Dominance After Bwin.party Deal Prior to 888 Holdings acquiring bwin.party the operator already enjoyed a dominating presence in Nevada and Delaware, although in New Jersey it still faced stiff competition from its nearest rival the Party Borgata Network. That has all changed after the operator’s $1.4 billion offer was accepted over that of Amaya Gaming, and in one swift move 888 is now poised to control up to 99% of the USA’s online poker traffic. Commenting on the development, 888 Holdings COO Itai Freiberger said:
“We will benefit from the combined poker player liquidity.. I am confident that this deal will take us to the next level.”
Currently, 888 software powers Nevada’s only viable poker site, WSOP.com, as well as Delaware’s three online operators, with both state’s together forming 888’s All American Poker Network (AAPN). Having added New Jersey’s Party Borgata Network to its portfolio the company has now achieved a virtual monopoly over the US regulated iPoker industry, and further more 888 Holdings may be soon be able to give the market a much needed boost by promoting New Jersey’s inclusion in a shared iPoker network encompassing all three regulated states. Up until now, Party Borgata Network opposed such a move as its software was not compatible with that of 888 and so would not have been able to benefit from the arrangement. Naturally, 888’s acquisition of bwin.party removes an important objection to a future interstate poker compact.
In addition to consolidating its position as the number one iPoker operator in the US, the bwin.party acquisition also has the important benefit of preventing Amaya Gaming and PokerStars from gaining an easy access to the New Jersey market. Moreover, if PokerStars is granted an iGaming license later in the year then instead of competing and likely decimating the state’s other smaller sites, it will have to, instead, contend with an established bigger site with the benefits of fair competition then filtering through to the players. As Itai Freiberger explains:
“Once completed, this deal will create one of the leading operators in the growing global online gaming industry. Both 888 and bwin.party are self-developed technology companies and we are excited by the growth opportunities presented by the integration of these proprietary complementing assets.”

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