888 Holdings, Amaya Engage in Bidding War for Bwin.party

Bwin Party Digital Entertainment

Online gaming giants 888 Holdings and Amaya, owner of PokerStars and Full Tilt, have both made separate €1b+ bids for struggling Bwin.party, according to new reports out of London.

Earlier today Amaya teamed up with GVC Holdings, a multi-national sports betting group, to make a €1.5 bid for Bwin.party.

It was just last year that the Canadian-owned Amaya completed a massive $4.9b bid to take over Rational Gaming, owner of PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker.

Meanwhile 888 Holdings, owner of 888poker, had already made an offer on Bwin.party earlier in the week.

Both the Amaya/GVC Holdings and 888 Holdings deals would be a cash and shares offer.

Bwin.party Assets Include World Poker Tour

Mike Sexton
PartyPoker ambassador Mike Sexton

PartyPoker was once the biggest online poker site in the world but declined significantly after the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act passed in 2006. It later merged with rival Bwin.

Interestingly PartyPoker also owns the World Poker Tour so if the takeover bid is successful by either 888poker than Amaya/GVC than the winner will also receive one of the longest running live tournament tours in the world.

The World Poker Tour is a relatively small part of any potential deal, however, considering it was purchased for $12.3 million in 2009.

Shares for the flagging Bwin.party have already spiked after news of a potential takeover broke.

Gambling giant William Hill was also initially interested in Bwin.party but since pulled out, making it a two-horse race.

Bwin.party reported earlier this year that its core earnings for 2014 had dropped by 6% to €101.2m.

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