Bwin.Party, the popular online gambling group, is moving into the social gaming market and intends investing an amount of $50 million over the next two years in an endeavor to develop its own games.
A spokesperson for Bwin.Party said "We are excited by the potential of this new market and believe we can deliver attractive returns in the medium term through relatively modest investment, funded from operating cash flow over the next 18 months.” The group added that the new investments are expected to hit its 2012 earnings by up to EURO 10 million.
Former CEO for Mytopia, Barak Rabinowitz will be leading the new game studio while Alex Usach will lead the technology unit dedicated to the development of social games. Dan Matkowsi has been appointed as Bwin’Party’s leading game producer while Dennis Hettema whose company developed Aces Hangout for Bwin.Party will be put in charge of prototype development and Tili Kalisky as the company’s new head of publishing.
Bwin.Party revealed that its first social gaming product is due to be a poker game that will be followed by casino and sports book applications by the end of this year.
Rabinowitz revealed that the social games market currently has approximately 750 users around the world that is due to grow to 1.5 billion by 2015.