The PokerStars platform is preparing itself to re-enter the US online poker industry following its licence being approved on Wednesday. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board chose to accept the request made by the poker room, giving it permission to start its online gambling services there once again.
This means that The Stars Group is one of two different applicants to seek and receive authorisation from the regulatory body. The other is the Mohegan Sun Pocono, which has received authorisation for its online slots and table games.
The PokerStars brand has partnered up with the land-based establishment known as Mount Airy Casino. The deal was actually announced last year in August, but neither of the brands has applied to receive a sports betting licence yet. As part of its plans for the state of Pennsylvania, The Stars Group is looking to a future of incorporating the BetStars platform, allowing residents to gain access to an online sportsbook that is already active in New Jersey.
Pennsylvania marks the second state that the PokerStars brand has re-entered, with New Jersey being the first of these back in 2016. The entire company and all of its sites removed themselves from the country after the deadly poker cull in April of 2011, which was marked as Black Friday.
More Steps Forward for PokerStars
It’s not only a re-entry into Pennsylvania that PokerStars is gearing up for. A deal was announced by the company recently that will see it unite with the El Dorado Resorts brand. This company operates a total of 28 casinos, which are present in 12 of the US states.
There was also an opportunity for the Mohegan Sun brand to apply for a Pennsylvanian poker licence. However, it decided against doing so and instead, stuck solely with online slot and table games.
Pennsylvania has 13 land-based casinos, and seven of those have now sought and received approval from the regulatory body to provide the state with online poker. There are just two of the 13 that have taken the route of not applying for any sort of online gambling licence. At least, that has been their stance so far.
It shows how far the state has come, considering that it was only in recent months that the Supreme Court overturned the PASPA law to allow sports betting across the country, and that Pennsylvania itself began offering legal online poker just a couple of months ago. It is, however, the country’s second-largest gaming market. In 2017 alone, the 12 land-based casinos that existed brought revenue of $3.23 billion to the state. Now the question remains on if its online gambling scene can bolster this revenue to even greater heights.
One thing is certain, PokerStars is ready to get in on the Pennsylvania action. And if The Stars Group has its own way, the BetStars site won’t be far behind.