According to an exclusive report by Diamond Flush Poker, Laurent Tapie has made a last-ditch effort to poach key Pocket Kings staff members and launch a new online poker site after the BTG/Full Tilt deal died.
The Diamond Flush Poker website has published what it says is a leaked email from Laurent Tapie, the executive director of the Bernard Tapie Group spearheading the Full Tilt deal, to 16 “key” employees of Pocket Kings.
In the email Tapie made a dramatic proposal, giving employees the chance to maintain their current salary but instead work for a new poker site under the Game Cubed company Tapie registered earlier this month in Ireland.
The primary condition, however, is they would all need to accept the offer:
I will do this only if I can attract ALL OF the Pocket Kings KEY STAFF to join me. With your help and know-how, we will launch a new website that will be best of breed in 6-7 months.
I know that any such step requires a leap of faith, so here is my offer: as of May 1, I will hire the entire Pocket Kings key staff – every single one of you – at your current salaries and with your accumulated benefits intact. I also will include stock options in the new company, so that we all will share in what I believe to be the exciting upside this opportunity represents.
Read the complete email on Diamond Flush Poker.
New Software, Lost Balances to ROW Players
Tapie went on to say the staff would write entirely new software and launch a new brand with an offer to former Full Tilt ROW players to recover their lost balances if they join the site.
The email was allegedly sent out just hours before Tapie released the official statement where he said the company was pulling out of the Full Tilt deal.
It’s unclear if any employees accepted the offer although at this point it seems unlikely considering Tapie himself called off the Full Tilt deal.
The Full Tilt Poker deal allegedly fell through because the Tapie Group couldn’t reach an agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice on a timeline for paying back ROW players.
In the email Tapie wrote the DOJ ultimately refused to accept the Tapie Group’s proposal for repayment of the players on April 14, 2012, because it wanted GBT to pay back 100% of the $184 million owed to ROW players in 90 days.
Bernard Tapie Group attorney Behnam Dayanim, when contacted by PokerListings about the email, said he could only offer "no comment."
Since the BTG/Full Tilt deal fell through, former competitor PokerStars has been rumored to be in negotiations with the DOJ to buy the floundering Full Tilt Poker for $750 million.
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