Amaya Gaming, one of the best known brands in the gaming business, is re-branding itself as The Stars Group, Inc. Company officials say the name change is part of a greater mission to change the company’s image.
The Stars Group’s efforts to shed Amaya Gaming’s recent legal troubles and disappointing profits is certainly well warranted. This effort is being led internally by the company’s newly minted Chief Executive Officer Rafi Ashkenazi.
Of course, shedding the Amaya name in favor of Stars Group, Inc. is just the beginning of Ashkenazi’s big project. Later this year, the company will moving its headquarters from Toronto to Montreal.
On the more nuts and bolts side of the business, Ashkenazi will be looking to diversify his company’s revenue streams. Part of that strategy, according to a recent report from Bloomberg News, will involve more mergers and acquisitions. This was a major part of Ashkenazi’s responsibilities at his previous employer, William Hill.
The meteoric flight of Amaya Gaming and its transformation into the Stars Group is one of the most intriguing stories the gaming industry has seen in quite some time.
In 2014, Amaya Gaming stunned the industry by purchasing PokerStars, and all its baggage, for a whopping $4.9 billion. Part of that arrangement included restitution for PokerStars’ lost US customers. The company delivered on its end of the deal and the legendary brand was resurrected.
That joy was overshadowed in 2016 when allegations of insider trading among then CEO David Baazov and a group of cronies became public. Baazov has been charged with a number of financial crimes and resigned earlier this year to work on his defense
Amaya Gaming’s name change to Stars Group, Inc. is pending until a shareholder vote is taken later this week.