Bwin settles Ongame deal

The Money

Bwin announced today it had come to a final agreement with the sellers of the Ongame Group that completes the transaction at last.

"In connection with the Bwin Games transaction (formerly Ongame Group), Bwin and the sellers agreed on a deferred consideration with a potential value of €83 million including interest as of settlement date," said Bwin in a press release.

The initial sale and agreement was affected when the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act was passed into law as part of the SAFE Port Act in late 2006. The law effectively prohibited payment transaction in connection with online gambling in the United States.

"In response to this law, Bwin suspended its real-money gaming operation for U.S. customers in the autumn of 2006," the company said in a press release. "In spring this year, Bwin entered into negotiations with the former majority shareholders of Bwin Games, who sold 96.3% of the company's shares."

The company and the sellers have now reached an agreement that will waive the purchase price owed, amounting to €79.9 million including interest.

In return for waiving the claim, the sellers will receive 28.89% of the net gaming revenues generated from U.S. customers over a period of five years should Bwin reintroduce real-money gaming products, such as its poker site, to U.S. customers. That amount will be capped at €79.9 million.

Furthermore, Bwin will be released from all remaining lock-up obligations on the sale of the Bwin shares, which they received as part of the purchase price.

"This agreement fully settles the Bwin Games Transaction with this group of sellers," said the gaming company.

Bwin also intends to enter talks with other sellers with respect to the remaining amount of the deferred consideration of €3.1 million.

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