Online Casino Sites Close to Settlement
The dispute between online casino firms Empire Online and Party Gaming is close to reaching a settlement, according to industry insiders. The deal would see Party Gaming pay the other online casino firm $200 million for terminating the “skin” arrangement under which Empire Online casino players were directed to the same platform as those of its rival’s. The prospect of an imminent agreement between the two online casinos was made public after Empire Online issued a statement confirming that the company was in “advanced discussions regarding settlement of the outstanding litigation claim with Party Gaming.”
While the full details of the deal remain elusive for the time being, insiders say that Party Gaming will pay the smaller online casino company approximately $200 million for its platform. The settlement will effectively end Empire Online’s plans to sue Party Gaming in the Court of Gibraltar, where it was expected that the online casino firm would seek $500 million in damages. Empire Online had also announced previously that it would seek an injunction forcing its online casino rival to uphold the skin agreement.
Following news of an end to the dispute, Empire Online shares rose five percent to 135 pence on the London Stock Exchange. The online casino firm was originally valued at over 500 million pounds sterling when it first floated on the Exchange in June 2005. After a subsequent crash its value stabilized to reach 400 million pounds. The firm’s online casino rival has refused to comment on news of a possible settlement; however it has indicated previously its preference for an amicable solution.