Groupe Bernard Tapie avsluttet forhandlingen med DOJ - PokerStars kjøper opp Full Tilt Poker?

  • Theodor JensenTheodor Jensen
Full Tilt Poker/PokerStars

Group Bernard Tapie Managing Director Laurent Tapie bekreftet på tirsdag at forhandlingene om et oppkjøp av Full Tilt Poker's sine verdier fra Department of Justice ikke ble gjennomført, dette åpner muligheten for at PokerStars nå kan kjøpe sin tidligere konkurrent.

I følge uttalelse fra Groupe Bernard Tapie, skyldtes bruddet i forhandlingen om “uløselige” juridiske komplikasjoner og løsningen på en avtale om tilbakebetalinger av pengene til spillerne. Tapie var inne i den siste fasen i forhandlingene med DOJ og har forberett en relansering av pokersiden i nær fremtid.

"GBT - Groupe Bernard Tapie proposed a plan that would have resulted in immediate reinstatement of all ROW (rest of the world) player balances, with a right to withdraw those funds over time, based on the size of the player balance and the extent of the player’s playing activity on the re-launched site," GBT said in the statement. "All players would have been permitted complete withdrawal of their balances, regardless of whether they played on the site, by a date certain, and 94.9 percent of ROW players would have been fully repaid on Day 1. DOJ ultimately insisted on full repayment with right of withdrawal within 90 days for all players– a surprise demand made in the 11th hour, after months of good-faith negotiations by GBT."

Det kompliserte salget av Full Tilt Poker har pågått siden november da Groupe Bernard Tapie inngår avtale med U.S. Department of Justice om oppkjøp av Full Tilt Poker.
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Tilslutt sier Tapie at kjøpesummen og de ekstra pengene som trengtes til å relansere Full Tilt var "too substantial to overcome."

I tillegg til denne overraskende nyheten, har ryktene allerede startet å svirre rundt på at PokerStars har kjøpt Full Tilt Poker for $750 millioner fra DOJ. Flere rykter har startet ved en TwoPlusTwo tråd , ChiliGaming CEO Alex Dreyfus la ut følgene på Twitter: ”That $330 million will go toward the repayment of players, while the rest will settle the outstanding charges against PokerStars. Terms of the deal have not yet been confirmed. ”

PokerNews har forsøkt å komme i kontakt med Department of Justice, men deres talsmann nektet å komme med en uttalelse om saken. På tirsdag sendte Groupe Bernad Tapie advokaten Behnam Dayanim følgene uttalelse til PokerNews:

Groupe Bernard Tapie regrets to announce that, after seven months of intensive work, our efforts to obtain final approval of the United States Department of Justice of the agreement to acquire the assets of Full Tilt Poker have ended without success.

Ultimately, the deal failed due to two major issues.

1. The parties could not agree on a plan for repayment of ROW players. GBT proposed a plan that would have resulted in immediate reinstatement of all ROW player balances, with a right to withdraw those funds over time, based on the size of the player balance and the extent of the player’s playing activity on the re-launched site. All players would have been permitted complete withdrawal of their balances, regardless of whether they played on the site, by a date certain, and 94.9% of ROW players would have been fully repaid on day 1. DOJ ultimately insisted on full repayment with right of withdrawal within 90 days for all players– a surprise demand made in the 11th hour, after months of good-faith negotiations by GBT.

2. The legal complications surrounding the deal – specifically, questions surrounding the legality of the forfeiture under non-US laws – also proved unresolvable. All of the key assets of the FTP companies reside outside of the United States. A non-US court well might regard the purported forfeiture as a “fraudulent transaction” and declare it invalid or deem the acquirer of the assets responsible for all of those creditor obligations.

Given the $80 million purchase price, and the substantial amount of cash needed to relaunch FTP, those issues ultimately proved too substantial to overcome.

GBT is very conscious of the hopes it has created — among FTP employees that they will retain their jobs, among FTP players that they will recover their balances, and among the entire poker community that the world's finest poker platform will be relaunched and bring a needed added element of competition to a world market that today is fully dominated by a single operator.

GBT cannot accept the end of those hopes. For that reason, unless a concrete and legally viable solution is found in the very coming days to save the employees and repay the players of FTP, we will move to our own plan of action.

We understand from press reports that the DOJ may have entered into an agreement with PokerStars pursuant to which PokerStars will acquire the FTP assets. If accurate, we can only assume that PokerStars determined that it was willing to accept these legal and financial risks in order to resolve its own legal situation with DOJ.

If a PokerStars acquisition of FTP means that all FTP players will be fully repaid immediately, we are very happy for the players, as their final and full repayment has always been our priority. We only regret that such a deal would signal further consolidation of a poker market already dominated by a single player — an outcome that may raise antitrust concerns and that, in the long run, is probably not good for players and for the whole online poker industry.

PokerNews følger utviklingen i saken og kommer med oppdateringer når de skjer.

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