062714 GTR_Amaya logo_300Amaya Gaming Group has entered into an agreement to acquire Oldford Group Limited and its subsidiary Rational Group, which owns and operates PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker online gaming brands, in an all cash transaction for an aggregate purchase price of $4.9 billion.

According to company press materials, the transaction will result in Amaya becoming the world’s largest publicly?traded online gaming company. The online poker platforms PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker are collectively the world’s most popular and profitable online poker brands with more than 85 million registered players on desktop and mobile devices.

Rational Group’s executive management team will be retained and online poker services provided by PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker will be unaffected by the transaction, with players continuing to enjoy uninterrupted access to their gaming experience.

“This is a transformative acquisition for Amaya, strengthening our core B2B operations with a consumer online powerhouse that creates a scalable global platform for growth,” said David Baazov, CEO of Amaya in a prepared statement. “Mark Scheinberg pioneered the online poker industry, building a remarkable business and earning the trust of millions of poker players by delivering the industry’s best game experiences, customer service and online security. Working with the experienced executive team at Rational Group, Amaya will continue that tradition of excellence and accelerate growth into new markets and verticals.”

Amaya believes the transaction will expedite the entry of PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker into regulated markets in which Amaya already holds a footprint, particularly the U.S. Additionally, Amaya will provide an extensive selection of its online casino games to expand the nascent Full Tilt Poker casino platform. Amaya intends to strongly support Rational Group’s growth initiatives in new gaming verticals, including casino, sportsbook and social gaming, and new geographies.