Plans for Partnerships in Online Gaming

18 March 2013 – By Cristian Dragomir

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Playtech is one the biggest names in the online casino world. The company has recently released its 2012 financial results. The figures are impressive but despite this, analysts in the online gambling industry are concerned about the company’s visibility in the evolving online gambling scene in the United States. Other European-based online gambling companies were announcing deals and cooperation agreements while Playtech maintains a rather low profile in America. A number of individual states in the US are moving toward intrastate legalization in the absence of a federal solution.

The company’s CEO revealed there was some unspecified “behind the scenes” activity as the company sought options. Playtech owns a 10 percent share in UK listed company Sportech plc, which has almost 30 mainly horse racing licenses in the United States. Sportech is present in New Jersey, a state that has been at the forefront of pushing ahead with intrastate online gambling legalization. Despite the fact that Playtech was not among those that were applying and being granted online poker licenses in Nevada, the company is associated with a number of applicants as a service provider. Playtech considers this as the right tactics for the American market and would continue to support them. Observers in the industry noted that Playtech’s joint venture with William Hill has not been very good for the company, especially since the personal reputation of Playtech majority shareholder Teddy Sagi has been raised on different occasions.

Playtech’s full year 2012 results include a notification that dividends are up 41 percent, comparing it with 2011. These financial results deliver a substantial windfall of around 33.3 million euros to Sagi, who controls 49.6 percent of the company’s stock. The purchase of Playtech’s interest in William Hill Online, for more than 424 million pounds, will bring even greater rewards to the shareholders. Despite these great results, many analysts of the online casino market believe the online gambling group’s success in the US may depend on partnerships with other names involved in this business. Whatever the names will be, online casino players will surely get nothing but benefits from all these deals.

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