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AGCC FULL TILT HEARING TO BE HELD IN PRIVATE
Thursday September 15,2011 : “Tribunal conducting a difficult balancing exercise of the interests of the various parties”
It has been an eventful day for industry observers following the ongoing Full Tilt Poker saga with the release of a Full Tilt Statement and the Alderney Gambling Control Commission announcing a private hearing on September 19 2011.
The Full Tilt Poker statement released exclusively to Poker Strategy.com reads as follows:
"On April 15th 2011 the United States Department of Justice unsealed a federal indictment against a number of individuals employed by major online poker operators. After the issuance of that indictment and a related civil case brought by the United States government, Full Tilt Poker withdrew from the US market. Then in a related action, on June 29th, 2011, Full Tilt Poker had its operating licenses suspended by the Alderney Gambling Control Commission.
As a result, Pocket Kings Ltd. (provider of marketing and technology services to Full Tilt Poker) has adopted a cost optimization program and estimates that they need to reduce their costs by approximately €12m. This program is intended to streamline the company's operations in order to better position itself for future growth and profitability in Full Tilt Poker’s markets outside of the U.S.
If all of the required cost savings were to be achieved through redundancies, approximately 250 positions could be affected; however the exact number cannot be confirmed until the conclusion of a consultation process with its workforce.
Notwithstanding the foregoing, Pocket Kings firmly believes it has a very strong future in Full Tilt Poker’s Non-US Markets, and is fully committed to ensuring Full Tilt Poker restores the site and repay players in full. To this end, Full Tilt Poker has retained Sea Port Group Securities, LLC as its financial advisor with regard to raising capital and/or assisting in securing a strategic partner in order to fund continued operations of Full Tilt Poker's non-U.S. business. The Company is in active discussions with several parties and will provide a further statement in due course."
Sea Port Group Securities, LLC is a credit focused Investment Bank founded by Michael Meagher and Stephen Smith and is described as "a firm unique in its ability to connect clients with diverse credit opportunities and create value."
The Alderney Gambling Control Commission (AGCC) released its latest statement with regard to Full Tilt Poker's much anticipated hearing scheduled for September 19, 2011 in London. The Commission has notified interested parties that the tribunal has ruled that the hearing will not be open to the public but will commence in private "in camera", to the disappointment of the AGCC's Executive Director, André Wilsenach.
The AGCC's statement reads:
"The Commissioners of AGCC forming the tribunal dealing with the regulatory hearing into the affairs of FTP have decided that the hearing will continue on Monday 19th September 2011 but that it be held 'in camera'.
This determination was reached following a pre-hearing application by FTP to further adjourn the hearing.
André Wilsenach, Executive Director, stated: "I am pleased that the FTP hearing will continue as scheduled, as was argued on my behalf. However, I am disappointed with the tribunal's decision that, notwithstanding my arguments to the contrary, the hearing will be held in private. I believe the public has a right to know the reasoning behind the decisions to suspend FTP's licences and call a hearing, and to hear the evidence that will be put forward on my behalf.
It is my understanding that the tribunal conducted a difficult balancing exercise of the interests of the various parties, taking into account the legal arguments for and against further postponing the hearing, and for and against allowing the public to attend the proceedings."
As a consequence of the tribunal's decision members of the public will not be able to attend the hearing. A further statement will be made at the earliest possible opportunity.
Issued by: Andre Wilsenach (Executive Director, AGCC)"
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