The Stars Group completes merger with Flutter Entertainment


On May 5, 2020, a historical event occurred for the entire gaming industry — the acquisition of The Stars Group by Flutter Entertainment was officially completed. As a result, the world's largest gaming company was born with an annual income of more than $6 billion. Will this event have any impact on modern online poker?


The Stars Group now belongs to a large holding company

In October 2019, The Stars Group and Flutter Entertainment shocked the market with news of their agreement to merge both companies. Over the next five months, the approval process was carried out, which included the signing of all documents, and mainly obtaining the approval from the British gaming regulator.

The path was mined with inconveniences, especially the creation of such a large association of companies in the UK market like SkyBet, Paddy Power, and Betfair, which was the origin of a monopoly in the country. It was even considered selling Paddy Power, but in the end, the deal was approved as it was originally.

Therefore, today, May 5, 2020, the new shares of Flutter Entertainment holding began trading on the London Stock Exchange, and The Stars Group ended its existence as an independent company.

So far, Flutter Entertainment will have five main divisions with a large share of freedom to choose how to work in the future:

  1. TSG International, excluding current operation in the United States;
  2. PPB, which includes Paddy Power, Betfair, and Adjarabet;
  3. Sky Betting and Gaming;
  4. Sportsbet and BetEasy in Australia;
  5. USA, including FanDuel Group and all TSG operations in this country.

In the future, the plan is to reduce them to four, combining The Stars Group (TSG) and Paddy Power Betfair (PPB). Most likely, Sky Betting and Paddy will team up to work in the UK.

What are the possible impacts of online poker after the merger of TSG and Flutter Entertainment?

According to Flutter Entertainment's structure, the holding company will operate according to the current division of its most important markets, which have different peculiarities in terms of regulation. It's complex to see hints about the fate of its poker rooms.

In the international segment of Flutter Entertainment, all PokerStars-based sites can be combined, as well as create a single poker room in the UK.

Such a move will optimize costs and prevent cannibalization between brands from the same company. But of course, it could take years before we see this development. For example, after the purchase of Ladbrokes Coral by GVC in 2017, the merger of the same poker rooms with partypoker was completed only in 2020.

The success of the main PokerStars' competitor, GGPoker Network, on the international market, can push Flutter Entertainment to speed up this process. Right now, our recommendation is to join the second one.

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