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APCW Speaks Out About eCOGRA Investigation of Grand Prive

25 February 2010 by Devon Chappell
The APCW Wants More From Grand Prive & eCOGRA

Hittin' the Streets With APCW Covert Operations: Grand Prive & eCOGRA

In a recent blog post here at OCS, we reported on the findings released by an eCOGRA investigation pertaining to the former Grand Prive online casino affiliate program. Not being affected by the situation directly, (OCS was never an affiliate of Grand Prive), we nonetheless were aware of the fact that several other affiliates were up in arms – and rightly so – about non-payment of earnings and broken contractual obligations on the part of Grand Prive.

Well, it appears this is still the case. Only this time around, those affiliates owed money from Grand Prive are directing their angst toward eCOGRA. Or perhaps I should say the Association of Players, Casinos and Webmasters (APCW) is. For anyone unfamiliar with the APCW, it is an online conglomerate of sorts, originally founded by webmaster JTodd (who still serves as the Executive Director for APCW) and currently owned by Casino City, which also owns APCW sister site, Gambling Portal Webmasters Association (GPWA).

APCW is a highly respected and influential force in the online gambling affiliate arena, and has done a solid job maintaining its mission to “fight for honesty, integrity, and transparency in the online gaming industry”. In line with that mission, was the APCW’s response to the debacle that took place last year with the aforementioned Grand Prive affiliate program.

Being that Grand Prive was an eCOGRA approved online casino network, the APCW and several independent online casino affiliates rightfully thought eCOGRA was the perfect outlet for launching an investigation into Grand Prive. However, according to APCW’s JTodd, eCOGRA initially did not respond to these requests and only did so after Microgaming Software was put on the defensive by affiliates threatening to end their relationships with Microgaming powered online casinos – most of which derive the bulk of their business from affiliate traffic.

When eCOGRA suddenly turned on a dime and announced an investigation into Grand Prive would be undertaken, needless to say, more than a few eye brows were raised. The fact is that eCOGRA, albeit an independent, non-profit organization, was founded by Microgaming executives, and for quite some time, would only give the esteemed Safe and Fair certification to Microgaming powered online casinos. Granted, that is no longer the case, and eCOGRA has certainly be an enormous asset for the online gambling industry as a whole. And who knows? The timing could have very well fostered suspicions of inaction, while in reality, eCOGRA was planning to undertake an investigation all along.

The point is that the APCW, albeit pleased eCOGRA was getting involved and conducting an investigation of the Grand Prive affiliate program, felt slighted and was under the impression that only after mud was being slung at Microgaming, did eCOGRA announce it would launch an investigation. And now that eCOGRA has published the results of said investigation, the seeds of discontent and mistrust have been given new life. In a recent APCW video, JTodd argues that many affiliates were not awarded their fair entitlement based on lifetime commission structures with the Grand Prive casino affiliate program. Apparently, some affiliates were owed thousands of dollars and paid as little as $77.

Will this become another chapter in the Grand Prive affiliate program Saga? Will eCOGRA address the APCW’s discontent? Will the world come to an end? Stay tuned folks. Wherever there’s money, there’s drama.

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