Amaya adds board members, confirms new acquisition talks
Amaya has announced the appointment and re-appointment of several board members, while the company has also confirmed it has entered into talks with an unnamed party regarding a potential acquisition of the Canadian gaming firm.
In a shareholder meeting this week, Divyesh Gadhia, Harlan Goodson, Aubrey Zidenberg and Wesley Clark were each re-elected to the Amaya board.
In addition, Alfred Hurley Jr. and Paul McFeeters were elected to the board until the next annual general meeting of shareholders or until their respective successors are elected or appointed, or otherwise cease to hold office.
However, McFeeters had previously advised Amaya that for personal reasons unrelated to the company, he would not be able to serve as a director, and after the meeting resigned with the board appointing David Lazzarato in his place.
Lazzarato, Goodson and Hurley will serve as members of the Audit Committee of the board, with Hurley, Gadhia and Goodson becoming members of the Corporate Governance, Nominating and Compensation Committee of the board.
Gadhia has also been appointed as chairman of the board, with Lazzarato to chair the Audit Committee and Hurley serving as chair of the Corporate Governance, Nominating and Compensation Committee.
Meanwhile, Amaya published an update from its Special Committee regarding its review of strategic alternatives as well as the allegations made by the Autorité des Marchés Financiers over David Baazov, who is currently on a leave of absence as chief executive of the firm.
Earlier this year, Baazov revealed that he would lead a takeover bid for the firm, but the plans were thrown into doubt following charges of insider trading laid by the Quebec authorities. He denies all charges.
However, Baazov remains one of several parties that have entered confidentiality agreements with Amaya regarding a possible takeover, with the company now confirming that another party entered into the process.
In a statement, Amaya said: “While there can be no assurance that this process will result in a transaction of any kind, the Special Committee is focused on completing its review of strategic alternatives in a timely manner.
“The Special Committee believes the interests of Amaya and its shareholders are best served by maintaining confidentiality around the details of this process, but will provide further updates to shareholders as circumstances warrant.”
Meanwhile, Amaya-owned PokerStars has opted to follow a number of its rival online poker operators by withdrawing from the Israel market.
PokerStars will convert tournament tickets into real money for players in the country, with customers also able to convert existing StarCoin balances into real money before withdrawing funds.
Israel is generally regarded as a ‘grey’ market for operators and this uncertainty has led to the withdrawal of various other brands, such as PartyPoker, Unibet Poker and 888poker.
Related article: Baazov to lead Amaya takeover bid