September 12, 2008

Party signs up with Evolution; Salmon due to start as CMO in October

Jon Salmon’s remit and duties when he starts out in his new role as chief marketing officer for PartyGaming have not yet been spelt out but he is likely to replace Sabin Brooks, who has been group marketing director at Party for the past three years.  

Salmon is due to start his new role in October and has been managing director of Intercasino’s marketing agency Ads Dotcom for the past eight years and previously worked with PartyGaming chief executive Jim Ryan when both at CryptoLogic, the firm that supplies poker and casino software to Intercasino.

One industry source said Salmon, who is considered one of the leading executives in egaming marketing, viewed the opportunity of joining PartyGaming as “the chance of a lifetime”. PartyGaming has made numerous recent comments about the growing importance of brands in online gaming and Salmon has been successful at building the Intercasino brand through TV and print advertising.

PartyGaming also announced that its casino site PartyCasino will provide its players with live roulette, blackjack and baccarat tables. The firm has agreed a three-year partnership with live gaming technology firm Evolution Gaming to supply the three games in 24 multiple languages and currencies as it looks to enhance its casino offering.  

Ryan commented: “We believe ‘live casino’ will gain us access to players who enjoy and prefer the experience of watching croupiers dealing cards or spinning roulette wheels and calling ‘place your bets’ in real time - that’s great, live online gaming entertainment.”

Evolution chief executive Jens von Bahr said: "Evolution is changing the face of online casino gaming for players around the world with an innovative, unmatched live experience. PartyCasino is an industry leader at the forefront of change and we look forward to sharing a seat with them at the table where entertainment and fun is provided by our winning, leading-edge software.”

PartyGaming could also be facing a much bigger compensation payout to WMS Gaming Inc. than the US$2.67m originally awarded. WMS was seeking damages of $287m for trademark infringement but were awarded the much smaller sum by an Illinois court in July last year. They appealed the ruling and this week the Appeals Court found in their favour, stating the District Court made an error in law, though it is not yet clear what the new damages will be. Party said it believes the court action by WNS is without foundation. 

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