Thursday September 13, 2012 : IGT PULLS BACK ON INTERNET POKER
Casino supplier appears to be putting its $108.2 million purchase Entraction on the back burner
Online poker operators on the IGT Poker (formerly Entraction) network have been advised that International Gaming Technologies management has decided to radically scale back on internet poker operations due to weak business returns.
In addition, reports from Sweden indicate that the company has closed its offices in Stockholm, terminating the contracts of employees, and there is speculation that the network will be shuttered by year-end.
A confusing picture emerged this week as some operators said they had been given their marching orders effective December this year, whilst others confirmed they had not.
The company has thus far made no public statement on the future of Entraction, which it purchased barely a year ago for $108.2 million.
Operators on the network include BetVictor, Kick Off Poker, Devilfish Poker, 24h Poker, Redbet, Betsson and No IQ.
The news comes amid high hopes that IGT would be among the first to enter the Nevada regulated online poker market, where it has already been successful in acquiring licensing, but apparently Entraction will have no role in this intrastate initiative.
Since changing ownership Entraction has not done well, losing much of its traffic and now characterised as one of the weak performers, according to weekly stats from the independent online poker monitor Pokerscout.
There appears to have been minimal development by IGT, which has exacerbated the situation by imposing geographically-based restrictions on Entraction's action as it pursues a corporate ‘regulated markets’ business strategy.