Not only the Irish casino news but all the casino news seems to be full of how Ladbrokes and Coral are going to manage the merger and who is going to end up with BwinParty. The issue at Ladbrokes has to do with the competition authority and the betting shop market rather than anything to do with the online casino businesses of either party. Online casinos are everywhere and the competition is vast but the betting shop business is in the hands of relatively few players and if the shops of Ladbrokes and Coral are put together they will number some 4000 which must be compared to the largest current player in the market which is William Hill which has 2360 and the total number of shops in the UK being around 8500. Coral also runs a number of Bingo halls which are also not part of the deal and Coral hopes to sell these in a separate deal. The Ladbrokes casino operation is much larger than the online casino business of Coral but the two together still do not create a monopoly business. The other battle in the Irish casino news is for ownership of the online casino and online sports betting conglomerate Bwin/Party. This group was only formed in 2011 when Bwin which had a great sports online gambling site merged with Partygaming which had a good online casino site and of course the well known Party Poker and backgammon sites. However the group put itself up for sale and it has created a good deal of interest in particular from 888 holdings but also from betting business GVC which many will not have heard of. Initially the bid was put together by GVC in conjunction with Amaya gaming which is Canadian company which owns Full Tilt Poker amongst other names. Despite GVC offering a higher bid than 888 Bwin management prefer 888 as suitor claiming more synergies but the affair is far from over.