Smurfit and Desmond-backed firm allies with US casino ahead of new US web gambling laws

23 Apr 2013

A tech company backed by the Smurfit family and Dermot Desmond is poised to profit when the US eventually passes internet gambling regulations. GameAccount Network has forged an alliance with MPTN, the owners of the Foxwoods Resort Casino, to build an internet gaming portal and jointly sell software to other casino operators hoping to be ready for when the online gaming laws are passed.

GameAccount, headed by Dermot Smurfit Jr, a nephew of Michael Smurfit, has signed a major deal with the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation (MPTN), the owners and operators of the Foxwoods Resort Casino, to develop play-for-fun games on the internet.

MPTN will use GameAccount’s technology to ensure a fair and safe game for all players.

However, the bigger prize is anticipated when the US government eventually passes legislation for real-money wagering. The partnership agreement is subject to both companies receiving licences from the relevant US authorities.

There are already more than 1m monthly visitors to and in 2013 will launch a new internet gaming offering that will be future-proofed to accommodate real-money internet gaming if the regulations come into existence.

Anticipated changes to US online gambling legislation

As well as building an online gaming portal, both MPTN and GameAccount will build turnkey business-to-business solutions for other gaming operators in the US that want to be ready for when the US passes online gambling legislation.

“The Mashantucket Pequot Tribe has long been a leader in brick-and-mortar casino operations, and with the help of GameAccount we aim to take the same leadership position in regulated online gaming in the US,” said Rodney Butler, Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Chairman.

“Our shared vision unites GameAccount’s technical capabilities with our Foxwoods brand and our leadership in casino management.”

GameAccount Network’s software already powers many of Europe’s leading gaming operators, including SNAI, Sisal, Lottomatica, Intralot, William Hill, Sportingbet, Paddy Power, Boylesports, Rank Group Plc and Eurobet.

“As one of the first European internet gaming system suppliers that moved into the United States in advance of intra-state regulation in 2011, we have developed the specialist experience, expertise and technical functionality required to serve Foxwoods from a hardware platform located on-property in Connecticut,” GameAccount CEO Dermot Smurfit Jr explained.

“We’re delighted that this experience and our unique capabilities will support our new strategic partner Foxwoods as they build a new internet gaming business in one of the world’s most exciting emerging regulated internet gaming markets.”

Casino image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years