Exclusive: Bally Technologies eyes online gaming co 3G - sources

Tue Dec 4, 2012 2:26pm EST
 
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By Sue Zeidler

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Slot-machine maker Bally Technologies is exploring a bid for online poker game developer 3G Studios, in what would be the latest deal to combine online gambling and casino gaming on social media, said two sources with knowledge of the talks.

One source said several Bally Technologies executives were scheduled to visit 3G's offices in Reno, Nevada on Tuesday to determine whether to make a formal bid.

Bally had no immediate comment. Abbi Whitaker, a spokeswoman for Reno, Nevada-based 3G Studios declined comment but acknowledged the company recently hired Wedbush Securities as its financial adviser.

Another source familiar with the matter said 3G, which helped develop a mobile version of the music video game Rock Band for Harmonix Music Systems, had been talking with others about a potential acquisition or partnerships.

"3G is holding initial talks with potential buyers," said that source, mentioning video game maker Activision Blizzard, slot-machine maker International Game Technology and video game giant Electronic Arts as potential buyers or partners.

A sale of 3G could range between $60 million and $100 million, the source said.

Activision Blizzard had no immediate comment, while IGT and Electronic Arts declined comment.

In August, 3G Studios applied to the Nevada Gaming Control Board for an online gaming license, and it is scheduled to start an online poker site called SlotALot with casino operator Eldorado Hotels in the spring. It also makes a free game available on tablets and smart phones that is played for virtual currency.   Continued...

 
A gaming table of Bally Technologies is displayed at Global Gaming Expo Asia in Macau June 8, 2011. REUTERS/Bobby Yip