Bwin.party management will look a bit different from here on out after co-CEO Jim Ryan announced he is stepping down from his position, leaving fellow co-CEO Norbert Teufelberger to run the company solo. Ryan, a Canadian native, has said his last day with the company will be on January 15, 2013 and his next plan is to return to Canada to spend more time with his family.
Ryan and Teufelberger became co-CEOs of bwin.party entertainment when their respective companies Partygaming Plc and bwin Interactive Entertainment AG merged in March, 2011 to become the largest publicly traded online gambling destination in the world. Together the two chief executives have negotiated partnerships with MGM, Boyd Gaming, United Auburn, and Zynga for successful launch into newly regulated European gambling markets. They have also planned a strategy for re-entering the US market if online poker legislation is successfully passed. Ryan says ensuring the company’s expansion plans are secure was his goal as co-CEO, and that he is comfortable stepping down to return to Canada.
“As we approach the final stages of our merger integration I am immensely proud of what we have achieved and know that with Norbert at the helm, the business is in excellent hands and is particularly well-placed for the future.”
The bwin.party board has said the contributions by both CEOs have shaped the company’s direction, establishing it as one of the most lucrative and successful online gambling companies in the world. The board has wished Ryan well in his return to Canada, with fellow CEO Teufelberger issuing a statement congratulating and thanking his departing partner.
“Jim has been an excellent business partner over the past two and a half years. His experience, drive and vision have proven to be a huge asset for our company and I have had the pleasure of working with him side-by-side, both as a colleague and a good friend.”
The future of bwin.party will involve further integration into regulated markets such as Canada and Europe, while plans to re-establish in the US are on hold until the online gambling laws are updated.