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  • Shuffle Master Sets Deal to Purchase Ongame Network

    Tuesday, February 21st, 2012 by Ryan

The Ongame Network is one of the most well-known poker networks out there today, and they are currently owned by the online gaming juggernaut bwin.party. It seems like this might not be for long though, as it has been reported that there is a near deal on the table for Shuffle Master to purchase the online network. What’s incredibly interesting about this poker news is that Shuffle Master is an American casino equipment manufacturer, and it is expected to give the company a huge boost if online poker makes a comeback in the United States. Of course, many people are assuming that online poker will end up becoming legalized in the States before long, and if this does end up happening then Shuffle Master could be sitting pretty.

The Ongame Network has been on the market as a potential sale for just about a year now. After bwin ended up merging with Party Gaming in March, they were one of the networks who was a definite potential sale for the company. Ongame was bought by this company in 2005 for an incredible £474 million. It’s important to remember that the sale behind this all happened before anything with Black Friday or the United States government occurred on April 15th, and this has taken a major hit on the value behind the Ongame Network (just like almost all online poker networks of course). The deal that is being reported isn’t a small amount by any means, but in comparison to that number listed above, it’s not anywhere near it. It was reported that it will be a $20 million (or £13 million) deal, which obviously leaves many people shocked after seeing that massive number above.

Ongame is no slouch in the online poker world though, as they are currently the 6th largest poker network in the game today when it comes to their cash tables. While the site does have an average of 2,150 cash game players over a week’s span, they are dominated by the likes of Party Poker, which currently has an average of 4,750 players on their cash game tables. So why is the sale for such a small amount you ask? That has something to do with the fact of which room is the current largest room on the network. This is bwin.com, and those players on that site will most likely be staying with what they know at the bwin.party side of things. The second most well-known room on the site is Betfair, which still could draw some interest from all over the online poker world.

Personally, I was just surprised it was the company Shuffle Master who stepped up and made this move. They mainly focus their business on installing poker tables and other gambling tables in casinos, and also create automated card shufflers as well. They also own the company Shuffle Interactive, which means that they offer casino games on all different types of different things such as Facebook, Android phones, iOS, Mac’s, and PC’s as well.

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