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888 Shares Soars Following Harrahs Gambling Deal


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Shareholders of UK-based online gambling giant, 888 Holdings Plc, will
be all smiles today after firm’s share price soared following news that it had
signed a contract with leading U.S. land gambling company, Harrah’s
Entertainment
Inc, to provide it with state-of-the-art online gambling
services.

Shares of 888 Holdings, which owns and operates Casino-on-Net and Pacific Poker,
rose by 11.7 pence to 97 pence and traded at 94.25 pence as of 10:30 GMT this
morning on the London Stock Exchange (LSE). Despite its stock dropping over 3
points this year, 888 has a market value of 324 million pounds.

As the second largest online gambling firm in the UK, 888, like most of its
competitors, wants to be ready to re-enter the lucrative U.S. online gambling
market when the country eventually reverses its draconian online gambling ban
and follows the UK in legalizing and regulating online gambling within its
borders.

In anticipation of this, many of America’s largest land casino groups, such as
Harrah’s Entertainment, have started making strategic plans to ensure that they
are also poised to benefit from a potentially free and highly lucrative online
gambling-friendly state. Enter the symbiotic deal between Harrah’s and 888.

888’s Dragonfish business-to-business unit will provide online casino and poker
software to Harrah’s in a deal estimated to be worth millions of dollars. The
leading online gambling firm is eager to return to the United States after it
pulled out a few years ago when U.S. Congress passed a bill to ban online
gambling.

Said 888 CEO, Gigi Levy, ‘It’s going to be the big U.S. players that take
advantage of the situation. The easy entry for us, being that all these
companies require infrastructure and services, is on the B2B side.’ Levy also
hinted that he anticipates making an acquisition for the business unit in the
coming quarter.

Dragonfly will reportedly provide gaming and payment software for Harrah’s
popular World Series of Poker and Caesars Casino brands.

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