An announcement came this week from the Bwin Party Digital Entertainment group that joint-CEO Jim Ryan is to retire on January 15 2013 and return to Canada with his family. The merger also stated that Norbert Teufelberger, currently co-CEO with Ryan, will assume the new role of Group CEO.
Commenting on the novelty, Simon Duffy, Non-Executive Chairman of the company said:
“Having lived and worked in Gibraltar for the past six years, initially as CEO of St Minver, Jim joined PartyGaming Plc as CEO in June 2008. Following the merger with bwin Interactive Entertainment AG in March 2011, he became co-CEO of the enlarged group.
"Together, he and Norbert have been instrumental in overseeing the integration of both companies as well as the launch into a number of newly regulated European markets and driving the group’s strategy to re-enter the United States should appropriate legislation be enacted.
"As the merger integration approaches its final stages, and having secured a series of strategic partnerships including MGM, Boyd Gaming, United Auburn and Zynga, Jim now wants to return to Canada with his family.
“The transition to regulated markets is continuing and we are entering a period of intense product and technology innovation that will now be led by Norbert Teufelberger, whose experience, as one of the pioneers in online gaming, is probably unrivalled.
“Together with Norbert, Jim has been a driving force behind the merger. His expertise and passion for the group’s gaming products have been instrumental in ensuring that the merger integration has proceeded as planned, putting the group in an excellent position to remain at the forefront of the global online gaming market.
“The Board and I would like to thank Jim for his invaluable contribution and wish him every success for the future.”
It was added by Norbert Teufelberger: "Jim has been an excellent business partner over the past two and a half years. His experience, drive and vision have proven to be a huge asset for our company and I have had the pleasure of working with him side-by-side, both as a colleague and a good friend. We wish him every success in whatever he decides to do next.”
Finally, in a statement about his retirement, Ryan said: “Being co-CEO of bwin.party has been my dream job. As we approach the final stages of our merger integration I am immensely proud of what we have achieved and know that with Norbert at the helm, the business is in excellent hands and is particularly well-placed for the future. Having given over 11 years of my life to the online gaming industry, I am now looking forward to returning to Canada and enjoying more time with my family.”