In his first interview with the media since announcing an acquisition agreement with Full Tilt, Laurent Tapie has told iGaming France that he "wouldn't have undertaken such a project if he didn't believe in its potential." However, he says there is "still a long way to go."
The agreement to buy the company would include the repayment of more than $300 million owed to players worldwide but is “subject to several conditions,” including a resolution with the US Department of Justice.
Tapie said: "We have shown that we have the funds necessary to repay player debts. We want to find ways where we don’t have to put in all the money and will be talking to the US Department of Justice next week."
Tapie hopes that the Department of Justice will use most of the $331 million seized from June 2007 to June 2011 to repay players, while continuing to pursue its civil and criminal cases against Full Tilt’s management. Tapie could then finance any outstanding debts and reopen the site.
Regarding the Full Tilt brand, Tapie told iGaming France: "The brand is not in question, it’s a well-known brand and the technology is widely recognized as being possibly the best in the industry. The management of the company is being questioned and it will be changed (should the takeover be concluded). I believe we have the tools necessary to once again make the site one of the leaders in the online poker sector."