Zynga seeks out online gambling opportunities

Zynga seeks out online gambling opportunities
Craig Chapple

By Craig Chapple

January 23rd 2012 at 9:58AM

Social games giant 'in active conversations with potential partners'

Browser games developer Zynga is "actively" seeking opportunities in online gambling for Zynga Poker, the company has revealed

A spokesperson for the FarmVille studio said that it was looking for potential partners for the new initiative as it looks to increase its earnings after going public.

“We build games and experiences that our players want and love,” a spokesperson told All Things Digital.

“Zynga Poker is the world’s largest online poker game with more than 7 million people playing every day and over 30 million each month. We know from listening to our players that there’s an interest in the real money gambling market.

“We’re in active conversations with potential partners to better understand and explore this new opportunity.”

The social games giant recently announced it would be launching Zynga Casino, a hub for gambling style games on Facebook, coming of the back of its success with Zynga Poker. The first title to be released will be Bingo.

But despite Zynga’s ambitions, it will first have to overcome stringent US legislation on online gambling, which was effectively banned in the country after congress passed the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforced Act in 2006, although reports suggest the laws may soon be relaxed.

A Facebook spokesperson also added that it doesn’t have any plans to get into real-money gambling, leaving it unclear if Zynga would be allowed to use the platform to achieve this purpose.

Last week poker giant International Game Technology bought out another online games giant, Double Down, which has 4.7 million monthly active users on its games, for $500 million.

This further raises the prospects of a future in online gambling on Facebook.