According to Gary Loveman, the CEO of Caesars Entertainment, the casino entertainment company can set up an online poker room in the US within just 12 to 14 months provided the Congress passes the required online poker bills. Loveman was addressing analysts and investors at a conference held to discuss the company’s third-quarter revenue, during which he spoke at length on the online poker legislation in the US.
Loveman stated: “Because of the relationships we have in place already, I don’t think we would have to sign any more deals that would dilute our earnings from Internet poker.
One of the relationships the CEO is referring to is a partnership established with 888 Holdings, an online gambling company based in the UK, which is famous for its online poker brand. Thanks to this partnership, Caesars has online casinos in France, the UK, and Italy.
Loveman claims that Caesars was the first casino in the US to advocate the regulation and legalization of US online poker and is now being supported by Boyd Gaming and MGM Resorts International, which recently signed a partnership agreement with Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment Plc, the operator of the Party Poker brand. The deal was struck in a bid to facilitate the companies to grab a share of the US online poker market once the federal government legalizes the industry.
Loveman says that Caesars Entertainment is ready to grab a share of the market as soon as the Congress passes the bill. Disagreeing with analysts who state that the US online poker industry is worth an annual $5 billion, Loveman said: “I consider $5 billion to be a conservative figure.”
Caesars Entertainment is the owner of World Series of Poker (WSOP), which recently concluded its 2011 series at the Rio. Pius Heinz, a 22-year-old college student from Germany, emerged as the WSOP champion, collecting a breathtakingly huge sum of $8.7 million. According to Loveman, WSOP tournaments gave away $209 million to players who made cash finishes this year. He commented: “That’s about $10 million more than the payroll of the New York Yankees, and a much better bang for the buck.” The payroll of the Yankees is the biggest in the baseball industry.
Although Caesars Entertainment is a private company, it has debt that is owned by the public. The company runs a number of casinos in Las Vegas, chief of which are the Rio, Caesars Palace, Bally’s, and Harrah’s.