Party Gaming CEO predicts industry consolidation

Party Gaming CEO Jim Ryan opines that in three year's time there will be only five major online poker sites of any consequence due to industry consolidation....and he intends to ensure that Party Poker is one of them.

Speaking to the UK newspaper The Financial Times, Ryan said: "We need to retake the hill and position ourselves to be that leader again.

"Our job, frankly speaking, is to take share back."

But, he admitted, the increased competition in Europe may make it more expensive for his group to achieve its aims as current industry high-rollers like Poker Stars and Full Tilt up the ante when it comes to media buys and teaming up with marketing affiliates.

The FT reported that Ryan is finding it frustrating that Poker Stars and Full Tilt continue to take the risk of operating in the United States market, something Party Gaming ceased to do following the passage of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act in 2006. This created a significant competitive disadvantage for Party Poker, but he was nevertheless preparing the online poker site for the day when it might be able to legally re-enter the US market in the event of a change in the legislative landscape and a successful "clean slate" deal with the US Department of Justice.

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