Amaya closes deal with Scheinberg

Amaya arranged a deferred payment to Isai and Mark Scheinberg, former owners of PokerStars.

Canada.- The Canadian poker operator company Amaya Gaming has signed last Monday a new financial agreement with Isai and Mark Scheinberg, former owners of PokerStars. The deferred payment deal has been set before the February 1 deadline, when Amaya was supposed to pay off its debt of US$197.7 million. Under the deal, the company has compromised to pay three months’ worth of non-refundable late fees.

Last year, Amaya revealed that they may have faced a larger financial restructuring as they needed to close the payment. The new agreement with the former owners of PokerStars will enable the company to deposit the available cash throughout the balance of 2017 in order to pay off the complete debt, which will avoid “incurring on additional term debt, amendment fees and associated costs and expenses.”

According to Rafi Ashkenazi, Chief Executive Officer of Amaya Inc., “We believe that our current plan speaks to the strong cash flow generation of our business model and will allow us to continue investing in the success of our business while meeting our pre-existing contractual obligations to the former owners. Based on our operations and performance in 2016, we are confident in our ability to repay the balance of the deferred purchase price in a timely manner.”

The Canadian company has acquired the Rational Group’s PokerStars, managed by the Scheinbergs, back in 2014 for US$4.9 billion. Amaya had already paid US$4.7 billion for Rational Group’s assets with immediate cash and deferred payments. However, the company had until February 1 to pay the other US$200 million. The new agreement has postponed the deadline, as the Scheinberg “have agreed not to enforce during 2017 their right under the original merger agreement to cause Amaya to use commercially reasonable efforts to issue equity to finance any outstanding balance of the deferred purchase price.”