In the UK, The Times reported this week that PartyGaming, market
leader in the lucrative world of online poker, is believed to be planning
to float on the London Stock Exchange.
The report revealed that the company is currently understood to be in talks with investment banks to discuss the wisdom and timing of such a move.
The Times says that much may depend on the legal issue of gambling in the US, where the vast majority of customers are based, currently so complex and ill defined, particularly for poker. It is currently illegal to offer American citizens fixed odds betting, but poker rooms do not fall into this category, as they only take a rake of the pot.
It is not yet clear how much PartyPoker is worth, but estimates suggest profits are somewhere in the region between $100 million and $200 million a year. At peak playing times, the site has had more than 50,000 people playing at more than 5,000 tables.