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Online poker firm set to float

Massive valuation for virtual casino

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PartyGaming, which runs online poker games, is set to float on the London Stock Exchange later this month for an estimated £5bn.

The price would make it the largest IPO in recent years and make PartyGaming more valuable than British Airways and Boots.

The firm is based in Gibraltar for tax reasons and launched in 1997. It turned over $222.6m in the first quarter of this year and claims its PartyPoker website hosts up to 65,000 players at peak times. Online gambling is gaining in popularity and winning new players especially amongst women.

The LSE is becoming the favoured destination for online gaming firms because of continued questions over US regulation. ®

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