Partypoker Forms Strategic Partnership with Canada’s Playground Poker Club
Online poker card room Partypoker has announced a partnership with Montreal casino Playground Poker Club. The union is a marriage of the physical and geographically specific with the cyber reach of the world’s fourth largest online poker site.
Last year’s developments in the UK gambling sector reflected an increasing global drive toward merger and acquisition in the gambling industry. In 2015, GVC Holdings, owners of partypoker, acquired Bwin for £1.1billion, Betfair and Paddypower forged a £6 billion merger and Ladbrokes and Gala Coral tied the knot with a £2.3 billion hook up. Analysts predict that this merger thirst will continue and that a future gambling industry will be one dominated by large conglomerates.
This drive toward ever greater union is a response to the rising costs faced by both traditional casinos and online platforms. Unlike traditional casinos, online operations can relocate to the most economically favourable locations. Tax and regulation remain the chief source of increase costs for traditional casinos but for online platforms, like partypoker, the financial imperative is for sustained and increasing development in technology and reach.
Tom Waters, Group Head of partypoker, has been explicit about the nature of this acquisition, seeing it as an opportunity to use “their intricate knowledge of the Canadian poker market…reinvigorate the partypoker brand, attract a new generation of players and provide a platform for our existing online users that will give them the experience of playing live poker at Playground all year round”.
Likewise for Playground Poker Club, CMO Phil Sabbah said of the partnership, “This multi-year agreement gives all of our club members the opportunity to play prestigious partypoker events online and also allows us to run online satellites for our live events aimed at the entire Canadian market”.