PartyGaming Pays to End Dispute - Monday 20th of February 2006

UNITED KINGDOM As reported by the This is Money News: "Internet casino group Empire Online will be celebrating a royal flush today, after rival PartyGaming agreed to shell out $250m (£144m) to end a dispute over their gambling ventures.

"This is the equivalent to 50p per share for Empire, which closed up 7¼p at 135p.

"The deal settles a lawsuit by Empire last November, after PartyGaming decided to ringfence its poker players so customers on 'skin' websites such as Empire-Poker.com could not join in.

"This was a blow to Empire, which had piggy-backed on its link with PartyGaming when it floated last year.

"In return for the payout, PartyGaming gets control of the EmpirePoker.com 'skin', which had effectively directed customers to PartyGaming's site. It also gets AceClub.com and Starluck-Casino.com…"

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