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MGM, Boyd announce deal with to run Internet poker sites

Partnerships would be contigent on the passage of federal legislation and regulatory approval


MGM Grand in Las Vegas, NVMGM Resorts International and Boyd Gaming Corp. ended weeks of speculation on Monday by separately announcing partnerships with digital entertainment — a U.K-based company that owns PartyPoker and the World Poker Tour brand — to offer Internet poker in the U.S. if federal legislation passes to license and regulate the industry.

Under the agreement, the Vegas-based casino companies would jointly operate an online gaming company of which the publicly-traded would own 65 percent. MGM would control 25 percent, and Boyd would own 10 percent. Both MGM and Boyd would be licensed to run their own poker sites through’s technology and software.

MGM has long been supportive of federal legislation to strengthen [Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act] and provide the needed regulations and consumer protections for online poker,” said Jim Murren, Chairman and CEO of MGM. “MGM is proud to have as our partner as they have the assets and experience that, combined with our brands, can ensure a secure, fair and entertaining online poker experience.”

“As leaders in the industry, we are confident in our ability to deliver a safe gaming experience of the highest regulatory integrity with brands consumers have grown to know and trust over many decades,” said Jim Ryan, CEO of

Monday’s announcement comes about two years after then PartyGaming reached a non-prosecution agreement with the Department of Justice. As part of the agreement, PartyGaming paid $105 million in fines with the assurance that the U.S. government would not prosecute the company for operating in the U.S. prior to the enactment of the UIGEA, legislation which caused the company to leave the American market.

Nevada Control Board member A.G. Burnett told Card Player that despite past troubles with U.S. authorities, there will be nothing that automatically prohibits sites like PartyPoker from being found suitable to operate in Nevada on behalf of a land-based license. The Associated Press reported that Ryan has been gearing up to deal with regulators.

Nevada is currently in the midst of drafting regulations for a future online poker system based in the Silver State.

Follow Brian Pempus on Twitter — @brianpempus



over 7 years ago

Just look at the problems of legalized, for med. purposes, mary
jane. Will be same problems.