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  • Full Tilt Poker Gets Investor

    Monday, October 3rd, 2011 by Nadia

Groupe Bernard Tapie, a French investment company, has announced that it is willing to acquire Full Tilt Poker along with the poker room’s gambling assets. According to the deal, the buyout company will pay money to the players the poker room owes. This is indeed good news for the former patrons of Full Tilt Poker. Tapie claims to be an expert in the field of reviving companies going through a financial crisis. Prior to this, the company has helped 40 such firms return to profitability. Despite having dealt with these companies, the investor said that Full Tilt Poker’s case is a challenging one.

*What makes Full Tilt Poker’s Case Challenging *

The revival procedure for Full Tilt Poker will be unique – as stated by Tapie. This is because, according to the deal, the poker room will have to first reach a favorable resolution with the US Department of Justice. Only after this can Groupe Bernard Tapie plan out its moves of reviving the firm. The task is likely to be difficult, as a host of charges are being brought against the poker room.

The trouble which Full Tilt has landed in is quite different from what a mismanaged company experiences. To add to its financial crisis, there is a serious legal challenge which the company is facing.

*Charges Against Full Tilt Poker *

The US Attorney, Preet Bharara is reported to have filed charges against Full Tilt Poker’s founder, Raymond Bitar. The charges brought against Bitar claim that he carried out illegal gambling operations. The prosecution also claimed that with the aim of deceiving the US financial institutions, the poker room deliberately opted to work with payment processors (third party).

*Financial State of Full Tilt Poker *

The day the license of the poker room was seized by the Federal Bureau of Investigation is referred to as ‘Black Friday’. On that day, Full Tilt had its website shut down. In addition, its bank accounts were also frozen. Under such circumstances, the poker room admitted that it was not in a position to pay back its former players. Also, the fund that Full Tilt was left with was nowhere close to what the poker room owed its players.

On August 30^th , the poker room came up with justifications to explain its financial situation. It was stated that the US government seized an amount of $115 million from Full Tilt. In addition, a theft of $42 million committed by a payment processor of the site landed Full Tilt in a huge financial crisis. However, in a press release, the company reiterated its commitment to paying back its former patrons.

In less than a month’s time the situation became even more complicated for the company. Preet Bharara, the US Attorney modified the charges brought against Full Tilt Poker, referring to the operations carried out by the company as a massive Ponzi scheme. According to the charges, the board of directors of the company made a lot of money by robbing its players. Around $443million is estimated to have been distributed among the equity holders and board of directors of Full Tilt between 2007 and 2011. The existing players were paid with the deposits made by new patrons.

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