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Old 06-12-2014, 09:30 PM   #1
Willyoman
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Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Guys, it's in.

This is huge.

Quote:
Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group, Owner of PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker, for $4.9 Billion

Amaya Gaming Group Inc.
3 minutes ago

Acquisition Creates World's Largest Publicly-Traded Online Gaming Company

MONTREAL, CANADA and ONCHAN, ISLE OF MAN, June 12, 2014 /PRNewswire/ - Amaya Gaming Group Inc. (AYA.TO) ("Amaya" or the "Corporation") and privately held Oldford Group Limited ("Oldford Group"), the parent company of Rational Group Ltd. ("Rational Group"), the world's largest poker business and owner and operator of the PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker brands, announced today they have entered into a definitive agreement (the "Agreement") for the Corporation to acquire 100% of the issued and outstanding shares of Oldford Group in an all-cash transaction for an aggregate purchase price of $4.9 billion (the "Purchase Price"), including certain deferred payments and subject to certain other customary adjustments (the "Transaction"). All $ figures are in US dollars unless noted otherwise.
http://finance.yahoo.com/news/amaya-...012400010.html

Edit: Statement from Steve Day, Pokerstars
Quote:
I see that there is a lot of speculation here about the impact of this news. I’d like to share some more details with you about how you as players will be impacted.

The short version is that there will be no significant impact on the player experience. We still plan to serve all current markets, including Canada, and to work to grow the game of poker globally.

We are also excited about the potential to be licensed in New Jersey and then begin serving players there quickly thereafter. I do not have a timeline to share, but can say that we believe that this purchase has a significant positive impact.

PokerStars and Full Tilt customer funds will continue to be held in segregated accounts, separate from operational funds, so you will know that your money is safe with us. The playing experience on both sites remains the same as it was yesterday. It is business as usual here at the Isle of Man office and at our other offices in Dublin, London, Paris, Malta, Costa Rica, and Sydney.

We will certainly miss Mark and Isai. As some of you have surmised, our founders established the culture and values that permeate every decision and every customer interaction. Though Mark and Isai are leaving, the culture and values remain, along with the nearly 2,000 staff who continue to turn our culture and values into action on a daily basis. Our entire leadership team is still in place, and I can assure you that we embrace these values whole heartedly.

While I only have responsibility for our PokerStars.com and shared liquidity poker rooms (.eu/.ee/.dk/.be), the continuity of leadership and staff extends to PokerStars.it, PokerStars.es, PokerStars.fr, and Full Tilt. To a person, we are all still here.

Will you see changes in your customer experience over time? Yes, of course! We have several projects already in progress and others that we are already in the process of completing, such as PokerStars 7. The people and values behind these two projects will also be behind our next improvements. A big part of our success over the years has been constant improvement of our product, and we plan to continue this tradition.

I still feel I was lucky to have the opportunity to transition from being a professional poker player to working at PokerStars. PokerStars was more than just my favorite online poker room, it was my favorite company. This is a feeling shared amongst many of our staff here, especially our poker room management team. We come to work with the mission of trying to maintain and improve the experience we had ourselves as customers. I have full confidence that this will continue to be the case for years to come, with full support from Amaya.

I do see some references here to casino and sportsbook. I can see why certain slides in the Amaya presentation linked earlier in the thread raise questions about our future plans relating to these products. Full Tilt has recently rolled out a wide variety of casino games, so it is not surprising to see such products referenced as areas of potential growth compared to the 2013 financial results.

Thank you for your continued support of PokerStars. And for those of you in New Jersey, I hope to see you soon at the tables!

Steve Day
Director of Poker Room Operations
PokerStars
https://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/sh...7#post43632247
Quote:
Originally Posted by AmayaCEO View Post
Dear 2+2 posters,

PokerStars has been an industry leader in providing the best game experience, protection of players balances, customer service, and online security for the past 14 years. For that reason, it is the most beloved poker brand in the world.

Amaya plans for PokerStars to continue providing an unmatched poker experience that loyal players have grown to expect. And we expect it to continue to grow by offering world class customer service and VIP program, increasing investment in customer acquisition, and entering new markets.

The company always operates with the utmost integrity and respect for its customer base and PokerStars will continue that approach, led by its experienced executive management team and dedicated employees.

Let me be clear in saying that our most important relationship will be with you, the players, and we look forward to building on the trust PokerStars has established with the poker community over the past 14 years.

Personally and sincerely,

David Baazov

Last edited by Videopro; 06-23-2014 at 01:37 PM.
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:40 PM   #2
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Hopefully this makes it a bit easier for PokerStars to get into the USA.

I suspect it does. Big win for USA players if so.
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:40 PM   #3
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Amaya own On-Game network?
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:41 PM   #4
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Wow subbed to read this in detail later
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:41 PM   #5
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$4.9 billion sounds a lot better, still a bit under what I was expecting.
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:43 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChicagoRy View Post
Hopefully this makes it a bit easier for PokerStars to get into the USA.

I suspect it does. Big win for USA players if so.
Or that regulation was impossible to begin with & the current ownership understands the US Congress. Will be interesting to see Amaya's plans.
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:46 PM   #7
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

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Originally Posted by ASAP17 View Post
Or that regulation was impossible to begin with & the current ownership understands the US Congress. Will be interesting to see Amaya's plans.
Read the complete PR and discuss it here.

Lots of plans in there.

For example, from the PR:

Quote:
Amaya believes the Transaction will expedite the entry of PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker into regulated markets in which Amaya already holds a footprint, particularly the U.S.A.
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:49 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Willyoman View Post
Read the complete PR and discuss it here.

Lots of plans in there.

For example, from the PR:
That seems like something a good PR would put out lol.
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:56 PM   #9
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So this is a reverse takeover basically and Amaya is the vehicle to get Stars public & cash out the owners.

Amaya had $155m in revenue last year, makes sense for both sides I guess.
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Old 06-12-2014, 09:58 PM   #10
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Does acquiring 100% of Oldford Group equate to acquiring 100% of Rational Group's businesses? Or are there still other PokerStars/Full Tilt shareholders out there?
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:02 PM   #11
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChicagoRy View Post
Hopefully this makes it a bit easier for PokerStars to get into the USA.

I suspect it does. Big win for USA players if so.
+1
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:03 PM   #12
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Kick Sheldon's ass.
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:03 PM   #13
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASAP17 View Post
So this is a reverse takeover basically and Amaya is the vehicle to get Stars public & cash out the owners.

Amaya had $155m in revenue last year, makes sense for both sides I guess.
You are ignoring the rest of there business. They are more than just OnGame network.
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:05 PM   #14
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

It is NOT a reverse buyout. The existing owners are 100% out.
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:08 PM   #15
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Welcome back Pokerstars
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:10 PM   #16
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Mr. Scheinberg and other principals of Oldford Group will resign from all positions with Oldford Group and its subsidiaries on completion of the Transaction.
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:11 PM   #17
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

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Kick Sheldon's ass.
You bet. I mean, I feel pretty good (huge understatement) about seeing some of the world's most respected and well capitalized financial firms placing fairly large bets on online poker.

Quote:
Amaya, based in suburban Montreal, lined up financing from lenders including Deutsche Bank, Barclays Plc and Macquarie Group Ltd., and Blackstone Group LP (BX)’s credit business, GSO Capital Partners LP.
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-0...lion-deal.html

I think this is the best news since Black Friday.
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:14 PM   #18
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

The Scheinbergs made PokerStars - if they're out then it doesn't necessarily mean that PokerStars will remain the same company that we all like and respect.
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:14 PM   #19
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

that's a whole lotta cheeseburgers.
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:16 PM   #20
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Possibly the end of the Magical Mystery Tours to the Isle of Man.
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:17 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by incrowd View Post
It is NOT a reverse buyout. The existing owners are 100% out.
It absolutely is if you understand that Amaya cannot afford this deal. They cannot even come close. Just because Isai and his team are out doesn't mean this isn't a reverse takeover.
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:21 PM   #22
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sciolist View Post
The Scheinbergs made PokerStars - if they're out then it doesn't necessarily mean that PokerStars will remain the same company that we all like and respect.
+1 Not much we can do but hope.

Not like there is an alternative.
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:25 PM   #23
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sciolist View Post
The Scheinbergs made PokerStars - if they're out then it doesn't necessarily mean that PokerStars will remain the same company that we all like and respect.
True, but this is encouraging:

Quote:
Rational Groupís executive management team will be retained and online poker services provided by PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker will be unaffected by the Transaction, with players continuing to enjoy uninterrupted access to their gaming experience.
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:25 PM   #24
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

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Originally Posted by ASAP17 View Post
It absolutely is if you understand that Amaya cannot afford this deal. They cannot even come close. Just because Isai and his team are out doesn't mean this isn't a reverse takeover.
No, you're wrong. Read the official release. The money is being loaned by Barclays and other huge financial institutions who are taking a mortgage on the company as collateral. Pokerstars shareholders are out, there is no reverse takeover of any kind. It's all big business banks.

http://www.amayagaming.com/2014/06/a...r-4-9-billion/
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:27 PM   #25
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re: Amaya Agrees to Acquire Rational Group *See OP for PokerStars Statement*

Wonder how Howard and co are feeling.
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