Online gambling affiliate Gambling911 is reporting that Lock Poker is in the process of acquiring the struggling Cake Poker Network. According to G911 publisher Chris Costigan, the deal would see Lock leave its current home on the Merge Gaming Network and “re-branding the [Cake] network, driving technology, marketing, player rewards, implementing a more aggressive tournament schedule and incorporating a new company philosophy, essentially restructuring the entire Cake Poker Network.” Costigan goes on to say that Cake and its marquee brand Intertops Poker won’t be integrated, but will continue on as separate entities.
Neither Lock nor Cake have as yet confirmed the substance of Costigan’s article, but G911 is a prominent affiliate of both companies and Costigan is reportedly close to Lock CEO Jennifer Larson. While it may seem odd to think of a poker room acquiring a network instead of the other way around, Cake has had a rough ride of late, routinely skewered in online poker forums for lengthy payout delays over the past year or more.
And there’s another Cake/Lock connection to consider: among Lock’s current legal team is noted industry scammer Bryce Vincent Geoffrey, who formerly acted in a similar capacity at Cake, where he gained a reputation for alienating Cake’s B2B clients. As for Lock and Merge, the pair recently got into a public squabble over Merge’s decision to cancel the heavily promoted Lock Ops tournament before it could get underway. Merge imposed an end to rakeback programs on its skins shortly after Black Friday, but Costigan claims rakeback will not only be returning to Lock’s new incarnation, but will return with “an even higher percentage rate.”