Tuesday March 5, 2013 : CLAIMS THAT CAESARS OFFERED TO SELL WSOP AND RIO TO POKERSTARS
The respected publication Forbes reveals some interesting recent moves by battling land giant
The American Gaming Association may have stirred up a hornet's nest with its public confirmation Monday that it had submitted a petition against the proposed Pokerstars-Rational Group acquisition of the Atlantic Club land casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey
Now it is alleged that one of the leading members of the AGA, Caesar's Entertainment, has been trying to sell some of its assets to the giant Isle of Man online poker group.
The revelation that Caesars offered to sell its World Series of Poker brand and the famous Las Vegas land casino the Rio to Pokerstars, coming on the heels of the AGA's opposition to a Pokerstars – Rational Group acquisition of the Atlantic Club makes the news intriguing with its hints of hypocrisy to say the least.
On Tuesday Forbes, quoting Pokerstars communications chief Eric Hollreiser, revealed that in February this year, a senior executive of Caesars Entertainment Corp. contacted a high-level Pokerstars executive and proposed a potential deal, putting Caesars’ Rio casino in Las Vegas and the World Series of Poker brand on the table.
“Caesars Entertainment approached PokerStars and offered to sell us certain assets, such as the Rio Casino in Las Vegas. Caesars suggested that this acquisition would give us a better relationship with Caesars and would help PokerStars gain a license in Nevada,” Hollreiser revealed in a statement.
“PokerStars declined the offer because we had no plans to acquire another casino in the near term.”
The Forbes article details the 26-page AGA petition, which has been filed with the New Jersey regulators, and can be read here:
The petition contains some strong and provocative assertions against Pokerstars in its bid to block the company from entering the US market.
It appears that a ferocious corporate battle may be shaping up between the AGA, Caesars and the Rational Group.
Earlier today, Pokerstars commented:
“The U.S. Department of Justice has said PokerStars is suitable to apply for a license in the U.S. and saw fit to give us the assets of our largest competitor and entrust us to compensate their customers outside of the U.S. We will continue to work with authorities including the N.J. regulators and other interested state regulators to discuss our qualifications and allow them to comment on what they find.”