IGT Double Down Purchase QuestionedPublished January 20, 2012 by OCR Editor
One gaming analyst expresses concerns over purchase, departing from colleagues on matter.
At least one gaming analyst has come out against International Game Technology's announcement earlier this week that it will pay up to $500 million for Double Down Interactive - a firm which develops casino-style games for social network Facebook.Grave Concerns
Union Gaming Group chief Bill Lerner said in a report to his clients that IGT might be spending too much for Double Down, and could end up hurting its core slot machine business when it branches out into the field of social network gaming.
Departing from the position of other analysts, who applauded the deal, Lerner said at least three major casino operators were "irritated" by IGT's decision to compete with what are effectively its clients, and by IGT's intention to enter the US internet gaming market in the event it is legalized.
Although Lerner did not name the casino companies, he said that between them they represent around 13% of North American gaming devices. He added that they are also concerned about how IGT will treat poker once they launch it.Real Gambling on Facebook?
Many other analysts predict the deal could pave the way for IGT to launch an online gaming website for US consumers, or for it to introduce gambling for real money on Facebook - which currently only accepts simulated forms of poker, roulette, blackjack and other casino favorites.
IGT officials have not yet revealed all their intentions for Double Down, although they say they have no plans to operate an online casino in Nevada, but rather will use its game titles to increase Double Down traffic on Facebook.