When the Canadian based Amaya Gaming bought the Rational Group, the parent company of PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker it caught just about everyone in the poker community off-guard.
The Pokerstars/Full Tilt acquisition was completed for $4.9 billion and the two questions that most poker analysts were asking focused on what changes would Amaya Gaming make to the existing operations of PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker and what plans did Amaya have in mind for the expansion and growth of these two poker websites.
Since PokerStars is the biggest online poker website in the world and Full Tilt Poker one of the most popular websites across the world, poker players were concerned if they would be affected by the acquisition. Amaya Gaming has been quick to address the first question by assuring both PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker players of the fact that there would be no drastic changes that would affect their gaming experience.
Recently, the CEO of Amaya Gaming, David Baazov went on record to give an outline of Amaya’s expansion plans and the company’s immediate focus. Baazov said that the immediate focus would be to offer “content to the gaming industry on a common platform across all media”, while expansion plans would include opening up new markets in sports betting and casino games.
In a statement, Baazov said
Amaya Gaming has estimated around half of its existing poker players also gamble on other verticals, including casino games and sports betting, and so introducing these products is expected to benefit customers by enabling them to earn loyalty points across a single platform. Likewise, Amaya’s expansion plan is expected to help boost traffic on the company’s iPoker sites, PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker.
Both the sports betting and casino market are extremely lucrative and Amaya Gaming is looking to capture a significant portion of this market share and increase its revenues immediately. The sports betting market is estimated to be around $17 billion while the casino gambling vertical is estimated to be around $25 billion. These two verticals offer Amaya Gaming a combined estimate of $42 billion and considering the reach that Poker Stars and Full Tilt Poker already have, it poses the ideal platform to launch and make an impact in these two new verticals.
Baazov confirmed that the combined list of customers from PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker amounted to 86 million, a massive player pool that would be eager to try out new offerings from Amaya Gaming.