The World Poker Tour is all set to undergo another change of ownership. The first acquisition occurred when Ourgame International acquired WPT from bwin.party in 2015 for $35m.This time it is Black Ridge Acquisition Corp. who has agreed to buy the World Poker Tour (WPT) Enterprises, and Allied Esports subsidiaries of Our Game International Holdings Ltd., for a whopping sum of $150 million.
Black Ridge Acquisition Corp. co-founder Lyle Berman’s, former Poker Hall of Famer and three-time World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet winner,
has agreed to make the purchase and the companies will then be merged to from Allied Esports Entertainment (AESE).
Poker boasts of a 40 million global player base, whereas video games account for a 2.2 billion player based, with more than 380 million people consuming video games and Esports content. WPT’s vast experience in running live events and managing media distribution are great tools that Black Ridge will require to capitalize on the Esports business. The aim of the merger is to bridge the gap in the Esports market and help monetize viewership of the segment. The company will also trade on the Nasdaq under the symbol AESE.
The deal is expected to go through in the beginning of 2019 and Frank Ng, CEO of Ourgame Internationl Holdings of 2019, says poker fans have no need to worry. He is expected to take a position within the new company and poker operations remain unaffected by the acquisition. Adam Pliska remains in situ as the WPT’s CEO.
Get ready as Esports decides to change gears and take on a new journey full throttle!