PokerGO Owner Cary Katz Sues His Own Company For $20Million

3 years ago
PokerGO Owner Cary Katz Sues His Own Company For $20Million
30 Apr

Billionaire poker high-roller Cary Katz has started a $20million legal action against his own company, apparently to avoid paying a debt he owes, and putting the future of subscription TV channel PokerGO at risk in the process.

The 48-year old businessman and highroller crusher from Las Vegas filed a lawsuit last week against CRTV (Conservative Review TV), a company which he is part-owner of and which owns Poker Central and its live poker subscription channel PokerGO, leading many in the industry to fear for its future should Katz bankrupt his own company.

Catz, who has almost $14million in live tournament earnings including an almost $1.5million scoop of the $100k Super High Roller at this January’s PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, claims that his CRTV company borrowed $20million from him over the past 18 months, but is now unable to repay him.

According to the Las Vegas Review Journal, this month Katz issued “a written demand for payment,” and the company “informed Mr. Katz that it would not be able to perform its obligation,” the legal demand putting the future of the beleaguered PokerGo service under a cloud.

Discussion on the 2+2 forum helped to clarify some of the finer points of the high-stakes internal battle, ‘SrslySirius’ stating:

"So CRTV fired a radio host, tried to sue him, and the whole thing catastrophically blew up in their faces for a -$14 million swing. What happens to the WSOP broadcasting rights if PokerGo ceases to exist or gets dismantled and sold for scrap?"

Michael Josem, former PokerStars and current CoinPoker Head of Security, is another who finds Katz’s recent actions beyond bizarre, tweeting…

Katz is a well-known Republican Party donor and CRTV bills itself as being “100% free of anti-American propaganda” with “no ads, no censors, no hateful liberal media”.

As for the PokerCentral and PokerGO elements of the company, many are unsurprised that they might end up going to the wall, SrslySirius raising the possibility:

“If CRTV is just going to default on a loan of that size, it raises questions about the sustainability of PokerGo." He added: “It always seemed that Katz was happy to run it at a loss, but if he's going to sweat this amount, then maybe that's no longer the case. I wonder how Poker Central investors Phil Hellmuth, Daniel Negreanu, and Antonio Esfandiari will feel about this lawsuit.”

He wasn’t alone, ‘FreshThyme’ posting:

“PokerGo was always the dumbest idea ever. Let's make all the poker content go behind a pay wall so new people will never find it, genius. Poker is a small market (compared to most things) it was never going to work.”

Fellow forumite ‘mavayr’ also agreed with these sentiments, posting:

“I don’t think any business minded person actually thinks a poker channel behind a paywall can be sustainable, without a heavy financial sponsorship, regardless of who is behind it.”

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Andrew from Edinburgh, Scotland, is a professional journalist, international-titled chess master, and avid poker player.Read more


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