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Amaya Gaming Buys Bwin’s Ongame

Today Amaya Gaming announced the acquisition of Ongame for up to €25 million. Montreal-based Amaya will pay an initial €15 million in cash, with the remainder dependent on the legalization of the US market.

David Baazov, chief executive of Amaya, said: “The Ongame platform is scalable, proven and secure and is well suited for quick deployment in new regulated markets. We’re excited about the wide range of opportunities this acquisition makes possible for us as we execute on our vision.”

The deal, which had been expected for weeks, is similar to the one ShuffleMaster was set to complete earlier this year for €19.5 million (plus a potential €10 million). The Las Vegas-based company, however, called off the acquisition in June, citing regulatory concerns in both the US and European markets.   

Bwin bought Ongame for €473 million in 2005, but labeled the network a “surplus asset” following the merger of bwin and Party last year. “The sale of Ongame conforms to our strategy especially as we move closer to launching our single, proprietary technology platform in the next few months,” said Jim Ryan and Norbert Teufelberger, bwin.party’s joint chief executives.

Amaya is expected to complete the deal in the fourth quarter of 2012, pending the usual regulatory approval. Players at bwin, one of the largest skins on the Ongame network, will be moved to PartyPoker prior to its completion.

Bwin’s share price rose 1.49% in London, while Amaya shares were down -1.27% on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

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