Party Poker makes push for potential return to US

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Oct 21, 2011 Posted in Poker News | No Comments »

In 2006 Party Poker was the largest online poker room in the world, but after UIGEA legislation was passed the publicly traded company was forced to leave the US market, as well as facing the US Department of Justice in court –Party Poker would eventually strike a deal with the DOJ that saw them admit to violating US law and pay a hefty 9-figure fine in exchange for a non-prosecution agreement.

Even though the site was decimated by UIGEA, losing some 90% of its player base, Party Poker trudged on, and eventually carved out a place in the worldwide market, and once again rising to prominence. Now the company apparently has its sights’ set on a potential return to the US market, if and when online poker is legalized in the US.

According to a recent Forbes article, Party Poker CEO Jim Ryan has been spending quite a bit of time in the US, trying to find potential partners/investors to work with. Ryan and the rest of bwin.Party (the two online gaming giants merged earlier this year) seem to think the path to the US market is to team up with an existing brick & mortar casino group, as it’s unlikely foreign operators (especially those that have operated in the US market in the past) will receive a first-generation license.

Ryan was quoted by Forbes as saying, “We had to be realistic about where we sat in the food chain,” adding, “We figured if the U.S. regulated it would be unlikely that we would secure a license directly, that the laws of the land would be written to allow existing companies and equipment manufacturers in the U.S. to secure the license,”

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