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Ladbrokes Gaming Company Considers Acquiring 888 Holdings

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Ladbrokes for the most part has been a leader when it comes to moving gambling into the future. The company has recently moved to Gibraltar to circumvent the tax rate in the UK, and now the company appears on the verge of another bold move.

The trend in recent years has been for the large gaming companies of the world, especially in Europe, to merge, creating mega-companies. Ladbrokes has been quiet on this front, until now. Reports have surfaced that Ladbrokes is in the preliminary stages of acquiring 888 Holdings.

The Sunday Telegraph reported that Ladbrokes made an offer of $372.15 million to acquire the gaming giant. The move would be a risk at the present time, because 888 Holdings is one of the companies that the US Department of Justice has not yet cleared in regards to past business conducted in the US.

Prior to the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, many foreign online gambling companies were accepting US customers. Several of the company's, including PartyGaming this year, have struck deals with the US to avoid prosecution. 888 Holdings is not one of those companies.

The likelihood is that immunity from the US would come before the actual purchase of the company went through. Bwin Entertainment and Caesars Entertainment are other companies that have been mentioned in conjunction with making bids for 888.

The online gambling market has blown up over the past couple of years as more countries have started to regulate the industry. As the expansion has occurred, the major companies have started to consolidate in order to become leaders of the industry in the future. Ladbrokes has lagged behind other companies into the merger era.

If Ladbrokes can succeed in acquiring 888 Holdings, the new company would instantly become one of the top in the world. The US would still be the main target, although the current laws would keep these foreign companies out.

Legislators in the US are pushing for regulation, and they were close late this past year. The consolidation taking place in the online gambling industry is thought to be happening in preparation of making a strong pitch for a gaming license in the US should the laws change.

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