Kyle May, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 License

Las Vegas-based slot machine manufacturer Bally Technologies announced Thursday it has purchased the business-to-business platform of ChiliGaming.

The software acquisition includes an integrated gambling platform for online poker, casino games and sportsbooks, and supports free play, “social gaming” and real money operations. Bally plans to integrate the new platform with their existing slot and casino management systems, giving a “single view of their patrons and powerful, enterprise-wide analytics.”

The deal is also seen as a talent acquisition. “Bally Technologies has also obtained an experienced team of industry veterans from within the online gaming industry, which will help our customers optimize their use of this platform,” stated John Connelly, Vice President of Business Development at Bally.

The announcement comes less than two weeks after ChiliGaming announced a partnership with Golden Nugget to bring free-play online poker to the United States, and with an eye on future legalization of real money play. The Golden Nugget deal is expected to be one of the first projects undertaken by the new platform acquired by Bally.

Along with its B2B operations, ChiliGaming currently operates consumer-facing operations, including iPoker skin ChiliPoker, ChiliCasino, and ChiliPlay, a new free-play social media site launched last year. These properties are unaffected by the deal.

The Bally acquisition comes after rival IGT purchased the Entraction network and recently renamed it. Bally was slated as one of the companies interested in the purchase of bwin.party’s Ongame Network, although a deal is now thought to be struck with Shuffle Master. Casinos are also getting in to the game: Caesars signed a deal with 888poker in March, Station Casinos owners purchased software provider CyberArts, and MGM and Boyd entered in to an agreement with bwin.party. The flurry of deals and acquisitions comes ahead of Nevada and other states proceeding with state-based online gambling legislation this year.