Online gaming company 888 Holding plc (LSE:888) has received a license from France's gaming regulator, Autorité de Régulation des Jeux en Ligne (ARJEL), to operate poker betting websites. When Congress closed the US market to online gaming, the companies in the business realized that they ought to avoid similar complications, exited markets where their business was not considered legal, such as France, waited quietly until these countries regulated online gaming, and then set out to reconquer them.
888 CEO Gigi Levy said, "We are delighted to receive a license to operate in France. We believe that the future of the online gaming industry is in regulated, legitimate and safe online gaming environments, and we have the right offering to obtain a significant market share in the newly regulated French market."
888, like its peers, is not entering the French market alone. Two months ago, it announced a joint venture with Isle of Man-based Microgaming Ltd. to develop and market online poker games for the French market. Joint ventures make it easier for a company like 888 to launch operations in a new market, such as France.
888's share price rose 2.4% in morning trading in London to ₤0.43, giving a market cap of ₤146 million.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on July 15, 2010
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