Pala Band Of Mission Indians Sells Pala Interactive To Boyd Gaming For $170 Million

Written By JR Duren on April 14, 2022 - Last Updated on June 13, 2022
Boyd Gaming's New Online Casino Has Over 400 Games

The Pala Band of Mission Indians is $170 million richer, and Boyd Gaming has a new gaming software supplier. Pala agreed to sell its Pala Interactive Gaming Tech division to Boyd this past week.

This marks a big win for a tech company that is less than 10 years old.

“This is the result of a considerable capital investment and a lot of hard work by the Pala Tribe and Pala Interactive employees to build a modern-age online gaming platform and business tailored to the North American regulated gaming market,” Pala Interactive CEO Jim Ryan said in a company statement.

“Boyd Gaming’s acquisition of the Pala Interactive business positions the enterprise for the next growth phase, which includes the development and execution of an iGaming strategy for Boyd Gaming and a continued commitment of investment and development in Pala’s B2B business.”

The Pala Band of Mission Indians are based in Southern California. Pala Interactive has licenses in eight states and the Canadian province of Ontario.

The sale is expected to be finalized by the first quarter of 2023, pending regulatory approval and closing conditions.

Pala Interactive brings digital gaming element to Boyd’s operations

Boyd now has a business-to-business and business-to-consumer iGaming tech company through the acquisition. The company has a substantial casino-game library of nearly 400 games, including genres such as:

  • Slots
  • Live dealer
  • Table games
  • Video poker
  • Bingo
  • Jackpot
  • Virtual sports

The company has partnered with a variety of land-based and digital game providers. This includes IGT, Scientific Games, Bally Technologies and Spin Games.

Pala Interactive’s portfolio of games and partners will allow Boyd to expand its gaming reach beyond the walls of the 28 gaming properties it runs.

Move will “leverage and monetize” Boyd’s gaming customer base

Boyd Gaming President and CEO Keith Smith hailed the purchase as an important “next step” in Boyd’s gaming strategy.

“The acquisition of Pala Interactive marks the next phase in the ongoing execution of our iGaming strategy, providing us full control over the technology, development and customer experience,” Smith said in a company statement.

“By integrating online casinos with our existing land-based operations, we will be able to further leverage and monetize our expansive customer database and the amenities of our nationwide portfolio of properties, driving growth in both our land-based and iGaming operations.”

In an investor deck that details the acquisition, Boyd highlighted Pala Interactive’s strengths:

  • Proven casino-focused technology and management talent
  • Proprietary technology platform for a variety of online platforms, including in-house game studios
  • Customer support, payment, fraud, and marketing services
  • 2021 EBITDA was around $5 million and expected to grow in 2022
  • Pala’s leadership team is well-versed in online casinos
  • Works with big-name brands like World Poker Tour and Unibet

Moreover, the deck notes that the addition of Pala Interactive is expected to have “no impact” on Boyd’s existing partnership with FanDuel, a point that Smith emphasized in his statement.

“While the acquisition of Pala Interactive supports our iGaming strategy, we remain fully committed to our sports-betting partnership with FanDuel, which has allowed us to participate in the nationwide expansion of sports-betting.”

Added Smith: “We look forward to welcoming the Pala Interactive team to our Company and building a highly successful online gaming business in the years ahead.”

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JR Duren

J.R. Duren has covered the gambling beats for more than a dozen states for Catena Media since 2015. His past reporting experience includes two years at the Villages Daily Sun, and he is a first-place winner at the Florida Press Club Excellence in Journalism Contest.

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