PKR shuttered suddenly this week after more than 10 years of spreading online poker and casino games. The site notified Microgaming on Wednesday that it was going to seek administrative protection from the Court for Administration orders. PKR admitted that it had financial problems and needed to seek outside help to avoid insolvency.
Microgaming permitted the site to remain open at least an additional 24 hours. It did not notify players or prevent PKR from taking any more deposits. PKR asked Microgaming to close its poker and casino skins on Friday.
Microgaming obliged the request and disconnected both the poker and casino products it controlled. All player funds were locked. PKR closed it website, leaving only a short message announcing the closure. All other information on the site was deleted. All pages forward to the status report.
Microgaming released a statement to Pokernews.com. It deflected any responsibility for the closure. It state that it did not hold player funds. Any claims would need to go through PKR, according to Microgaming.
PKR moved to the Microgaming Poker Network in March 2016. The site barely lasted a year. It previously operated a standalone site that specialized in 3-D software. PKR was able to migrate that software to Microgaming when it moved.
Many Microgaming sites fail
There is a history of sudden closures resulting in player funds at Microgaming. Failed poker sites have been a member of the network many times. These closures include Eurolinx, BetOnBet, 5050 Poker, 24 Poker, Bet Hold’em and Purple Lounge. Players lost money every time these sites shuttered with the exception of Bet Hold’em, which was bailed out by Bodog. Tusk players received a nickel on the dollar.
Microgaming denied responsibility in all of the closures. The company has a habit for not accepting any culpability when it licenses companies to operate skins on its network and they fail. In the event of Tusk, Microgaming referred marketing partners and players to the skins, only to have them fail.
Microgaming says that it does not hold deposited funds. That is partially true, but not entirely. The central bank holds electronic funds, sometimes on credit, in a clearinghouse when a player loses money from one skin to another. When a skin fails, this money won in recent days is in fact held by Microgaming, contrary to its claim. The company has never commented on what happens to these funds when skins fail.
One Eurolinx player won $10,000 in the days before the site failed in 2009. Microgaming was silent on why the network could not pay these funds to the player. Microgaming blamed Eurolinx and pushed all responsibility to that company, even though it turns out its CEO had a history of fraud and Microgaming did not vet its partner properly. Somehow this is the players’ fault and not Microgaming’s, a company that only seems to care about royalties for the use of its software.
We do not recommend Microgaming products
The lack of caring about player funds, the repeat issues with licensing incompetent, fraudulent or poorly capitalized skins leaves us to recommend players skip Microgaming. The company will not stand behind the sites it licenses and clearly fails to use due diligence in its evaluation process. Many longstanding sites like PKR and Purple Lounge have failed under the watch of Microgaming. This means that one can never know if their favorite skin is next as it is evident Microgaming does not audit the sites to ensure solvency.