Renowned Gibraltar-based online gaming operator, 888 Holdings in December 2018 announced its intentions to acquire the remaining interest in the All American Poker Network (AAPN) as part of its efforts to facilitate future growth in the United States poker market. The company has followed through with these plans and has now bought out the remaining 53 percent stake of the All American Poker Network from Avenue Capital, its joint venture partner, for whopping $28 million. 888 Holdings is now the sole owner of the network.
888 Holdings is hopeful that the acquisition and sole ownership of the network will strengthen its hold and growth position in the rapidly growing and evolving gaming market in the United States. The move will also give the company full flexibility to deliver on several growth opportunities like inking new partnership deals and agreements and allowing it to continue rolling out its product and technology within the regulated markets in the country without having to need approval from a partner.
According to Itai Frieberger, the chief executive officer of 888 Holdings, the acquisition of the remaining stake in the All American Poker Network is “an important strategic step towards 888 achieving its exciting long-term potential in the US.” He points out that the move has given the company even more technical, operational and commercial flexibility to pursue the development of innovative partnerships as well as debut the company’s products in new states through both B2B and B2C channels. In fact, considering the significant growth of gaming opportunities in the US gambling market, this move was perfectly timed and is, therefore, likely to pay off decently in the near future.
The All American Poker Network
Formed over five years ago as a joint venture between Avenue Capital and 888 Holdings, the All American Poker Network was aimed at helping the latter to build its online gambling platform in all the states where online gambling was legal and regulated. Unfortunately, the expected results were not achieved as quickly as the folks over at 888 Holdings had hoped. To put this into perspective, since 2013, only four states in the US have legalized and regulated online poker industries – this included the Keystone State which is still preparing to officially launch its online gaming industry.
However, it was not all bad. The joint venture afforded 888 Holdings the financial capability and flexibility to build a position in the regulated United States market over the last few years whilst also enabling investments in other regulated international markets. The buyout is a monumental step for 888 especially in its bid to expand further in the country. The two companies agreed that $10 million would be paid upfront for the acquisition with the remaining $18 million to be paid before April 2019.