Amaya CEO David Baazov charged with insider trading; Amaya provides update
23 March 2016
(PRESS RELEASE) -- Amaya Inc. today provided an update regarding the previously reported investigation by the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF), the securities regulatory authority in the Province of Quebec.
The AMF has charged Amaya's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, David Baazov, for aiding with trades while in possession of privileged information, influencing or attempting to influence the market price of Amaya securities and communicating privileged information but has made no allegation of wrongdoing by Amaya or any of its subsidiaries or other directors or officers.
The charges related to communicating privileged information involve allegations relating to a former financial advisor to Amaya, and the charges relating to influencing or attempting to influence the market price of Amaya securities involve allegations relating to that same advisor and an employee. Mr. Baazov denies the allegations against him, and Amaya believes they are without merit and expects Mr. Baazov will be fully exonerated.
Amaya does not anticipate the charges will have any impact on the management or day-to-day affairs of the operating business. Operations continue as usual and there will be no change to the PokerStars or Full Tilt product offerings, either in customer experience, player fund security or game integrity. Amaya will continue to communicate with its regulators and does not currently anticipate any material negative impact on its current or potential licenses, approvals or partnerships as a result of the allegations against Mr. Baazov.
"David Baazov has the full support of the independent members of the board," said Dave Gadhia, Amaya's Lead Director and independent board member, and the former Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of Gateway Casinos & Entertainment Inc. "As noted previously, Amaya conducted an external internal review, supervised by its independent board members with the assistance of external legal counsel from Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP in Canada and Greenberg Traurig LLP in the U.S., which thoroughly reviewed the relevant internal activities surrounding the Oldford Group acquisition. This review found no evidence of any violations of Canadian securities laws or regulations. The independent members of the board received and reviewed the information and concluded that no action should be taken. We have not been provided with any new information upon which the AMF's allegations of infractions are based."
Amaya continues to cooperate with the AMF and has done so since the AMF first began its investigation in 2014, which is consistent with company practice. Amaya previously provided the AMF with a large amount of publicly accessible information related to in the time period leading up to the transaction, specifically the period the AMF is investigating.