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Thursday, November 03, 2005

Takeover bid for Empire Online

Industry commentators were quick to play down speculation regarding how much PartyGaming might be willing to put on the table should it go ahead with a takeover bid for Empire Online.
After it was announced that PartyGaming had made a preliminary approach, press reports this morning suggested that PartyGaming, the world’s largest online poker room, could offer up to £400m for Empire.
The offer for Empire comes after PartyGaming set up an operating poker platform purely aimed at players on PartyPoker.com on October 10, in effect ring-fencing its existing player base from the platform it previously shared with its ‘skins’ EmpirePoker, Intertops, Coral Eurobet and Multipoker.

On the same day, Empire issued a bullish trading update, saying net gaming revenues had grown 24% in Q3 compared with Q2 2005, before then issuing a profit warning on October 18, announcing that its growth would be 10% below original forecasts as a result of PartyGaming’s platform switch.

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