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Funds advised by Apax Partners invest €34 million in

Profitable online skill gaming company plans to extend global leadership position

London 1 September 2005. Funds advised by Apax Partners, one of the world's leading private equity firms, announced today the acquisition of a significant minority stake in, the leading international skill gaming company. is an online games site where players win cash prizes by participating in casual game tournaments. Players join tournaments to compete against other real players of similar skill levels to win money or points.

Serial entrepreneurs Ricardo Zacconi and Toby Rowland founded the company in 2003. Founder Riccardo Zacconi said, "We focus on providing players with the most compelling skill gaming experience available online. That is why the Midasplayer games community generates more activity and revenue per user than other forms of online casual gaming. Our partners make a lot of money with us and we are accessing ever-larger distribution opportunities."

"This investment marks an important new phase in the development of the company," said Founder Toby Rowland. "Over the last two years, we have built a base of hundreds of thousands of paying European users who enjoy the thrill of playing competitively for small stakes. Now we will pursue global expansion to capitalise on our strong momentum."

Michael Chalfen, Partner at Apax Partners, said; " has made rapid progress in the skill gaming category and is emerging as the sector leader across Europe and the US. Midasplayer has become the chosen skill gaming partner for distributors across Europe. Its proven economic advantage for European partners creates the opportunity for the company to win distribution in the US and Asia and it already has a significant distribution pipeline outside Europe."

" has a strong management team and distribution partners speak highly of them. The business is very well run, is already profitable and is highly scalable. We intend to help the company to expand its international platform very rapidly."


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