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Clonie Gowen Suing Full Tilt Poker

Law, 2008-11-18, by Ozone

The owners of the second largest online poker room, Full Tilt Poker, are being sued by one of their former colleagues. Clonie Gowen filed a lawsuit against Tiltware LLC, the software provider to Full Tilt Poker, and all of the site's "Team Pros". The list of defendants on the lawsuit include the likes of Phil Ivey, Chris Ferguson, Howard Lederer, and Mike Matusow.

Gowen alleges that she was given 1% ownership in the company in exchange for representing them by wearing Full Tilt Poker merchandise in live tournaments. Her lawsuit claims that in May 2007, all Team Full Tilt Poker members received a distribution check except for her. She says that in November 2007, Howard Lederer approached her and offered to give her $250,000 as compensation for representing the company. Gowen refused this offer claiming it was only a fraction of what she was owed.

The lawsuit claims that, despite not being paid, Gowen continued to represent the company until last week when she received word that Full Tilt would release a statement saying she is no longer a Team Pro.

She is suing the company for $40 million which is what she estimates her 1% share to be worth. When comparing the market capitalization of publicly traded online poker firms, it seems that Gowen's estimate that Full Tilt is worth $4 billion is bullish to say the least.

Albeit much smaller than Full Tilt, Cyptologic Inc. is worth just $36 million.

GIGM, a company whose chief holding is Everest Poker, is worth just $228 million.

Party Gaming, operators of Party Poker, which is roughly half the size of Full Tilt, is valued at $600 million on the London Stock Exchange.

Convincing a judge that Full Tilt Poker is worth nearly seven times more than Party Gaming shouldn't be easy. Keep in mind, Party Poker does not accept U.S. players, so they do not have the sort of legal and/or regulatory risk that Full Tilt Poker has.

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