Social games pioneer Zynga confirmed Wednesday that it has taken a baby
step into real-money gaming in the state that is home to casino-rich Las
Zynga said that it has applied to the Nevada Gaming Control
Board for a "preliminary finding of suitability" that would clear the
way to seek a license to let players of its online games bet real cash.
filing continues our strategic effort to enter regulated RMG (real
money gaming) markets in a prudent way," Zynga chief revenue officer
Barry Cottle said in an email statement.
"As we've said
previously, the broader US market is an opportunity that's further out
on the horizon based on legislative developments, but we are preparing
for a regulated market."
Zynga expected it to take a year to 18
months before the outcome of the application is known and did not reveal
whether it intended to pursue a Nevada gambling license of any kind if
it is successful.
Poker and casino style games are among popular Zynga titles.
Nevada move came less than two months after Zynga announced a
partnership with RMG operator Bwin.party to run poker, roulette,
blackjack and other virtual casino games in Britain.
RMG games from Zynga should be available for play in Britain in the first half of next year, according to Cottle.
with an established leader like Bwin.party is a strategic and prudent
way for us to enter a key RMG market while giving local players the real
money games they've been asking us for," Cottle said when the
partnership was announced.
In October, Zynga began trimming
workers, shuttering studios and shelving older titles to get in
financial shape for the long term.
Zynga was "parting ways" with
five percent of its approximately 3,300 full-time workers and dumping 13
games, along with significantly cutting its investment in "The Ville"
The cost-cutting measures are intended to let Zynga
focus on more promising games and ramp up its network on the Web and on
Zynga rose to stardom by tailoring games for play
by friends on Facebook and went on to create its own online playground