Well, it looks like the big players are lining themselves up for a move on the US online gambling market, if it ever gets to the position that it becomes legal (when they really need to get the deficit down in the US. Maybe Greece could get some tax drachmas – I mean Euros- from online casinos. They could hold a referendum on it.)
It has just been announced that MGM Resorts International- the Las Vegas gorilla- have signed an online poker agreement with newly merged Bwin and Party Gaming (now called bwin.party digital entertainment plc) (LSE: BPTY) that aims to join one of the biggest and best land-based gaming players in the U.S. with the planet’s largest publicly-traded online gaming company.
Online poker is still illegal in the U.S., of course- or rather carrying out any transactions relating to online poker and casinos is, but the US Congress is considering legalizing it at a federal level. If this ever happens (and we’ve been waiting for a while), then bwin.party and MGM Resorts would offer poker online.
Both companies are kind of tip-toeing into it, stating such things as “technologically-advanced”, “proven”, “safe, secure and fair gaming”.
Now bwin.party is famous for its PartyPoker brand, and it settled up with the DOJ for previous misdemeanours relating to offering poker to US players, or rather one of their founders did. Luckily he has left, as otherwise bwin.party would have had a Mr Dikshit presenting the PowerPoint slides to MGM in Nevada (couldn’t resist, the old ones are the best, boom boom).
MGM Resorts needs no introduction, if you have ever been to Las Vegas. It has 15 gambling palaces in Nevada, Mississippi, and Michigan, and a 50% share in three other casinos in Nevada and Illinois.
Well, we will have to see how this all pans out, but it is certainly an interesting move in the right direction. MGM has some friends in some pretty high places in the US. Maybe they know something that we don’t?