BUSINESS

USA news: IGT defend DoubleDown gamble; Christie criticises sports leagues; Three more firms to hear Nevada fate

TAGs: boyd interactive, chris christie, DoubleDown Casino, Fertitta Interactive, Golden Nugget, IGT, international game technology, Nevada, New Jersey Online Gambling

USA flag 1International Game Technology CEO Patti Hart has defended their big money purchase of social gaming firm DoubleDown Casino. Hart, speaking to the Las Vegas Review-Journal at the IGT HQ, said the $500million acquisition could eventually be “the best investment” the firm has ever made. She added: “It’s a big sticker price, but that’s what it takes to play. We believe we structured the deal completely appropriately. That allowed us to retain the management team. In the Seattle office, there has been almost zero turnover. That’s unheard of in previous IGT deals.”

IGT is putting most of their eggs in the DoubleDown basket after they decided to get out of the online poker game by letting go of the former Entraction network last month.

North America’s major sports leagues have again drawn the ire of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie this time at a regional town hall meeting. Press of Atlantic City report that Christie was questioned on sports betting and reiterated his desire to bring betting to certain parts of the state.

“I would like to see it sent to Atlantic City and Monmouth racetrack to bring revenue to the city and the state. If it is monitored and controlled, it will be good for the people in New Jersey and the industry,” Christie said.

As for the major sports leagues and NCAA, he called them “hypocritical” in that they know that unregulated and “illegal” sport betting is already going on “every day”. The row has already reached boiling point and fellow New Jersey politican Senator Raymond Lesniak has been stoking the fire for a while now with the latest from Christie showing that the tide is not relenting.

Three more firms will hear their Nevada online poker licence fate next week with Boyd Interactive, Fertitta Interactive and Golden Nugget all on the agenda at the gaming board’s next meeting. The three companies have applied for online poker operator licences and will see applications go before the Nevada Gaming Control Board on October 3-4. If they are successful their names will be added to a list that includes three licenced operators and a further seven firms with licences including one affiliate.

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