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First American Poker Network to be iPoker?

518 Views on 26/2/24

iPoker Network USA

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iPoker's Expansion Plans for North American Markets

iPoker, owned by Playtech, has emerged as a leading B2B poker network globally since its inception in 2004. The network, boasting notable brands like Betsson, Paddy Power, Betfair, and William Hill, has set its sights on entering the lucrative North American markets, with a specific focus on the United States. Baard Dahl, iPoker Network & Promotions Manager at Playtech, expressed genuine excitement about the network’s ambitious plans to expand into the thriving North American markets.

iPoker in the US: Key Facts

- Company: iPoker, owned by Playtech
- Current Operation: Leading B2B poker network with a global presence
- Network Inception: 2004
- Market Rank: Third in cash game traffic in the dot-com market
- Future Plan: Expansion into North American markets, specifically United States and Ontario
- Competition in US: WSOP/888 network, BetMGM, PokerStars

Understanding iPoker Network

iPoker, established in 2004, stands as one of the oldest poker networks globally. Presently hosting nearly 50 poker skins, including renowned European bookmakers, iPoker ranks third in cash game traffic in the dot-com market. Beyond its global network, iPoker manages segregated networks in Italy, Spain-France, and Austria-Finland.

iPoker’s Online Poker Networks

Global iPoker Network:

The main international network hosting nearly 50 poker skins.

Italian Network:

A segregated network leading the market in Italy with around 10 brands.

Spanish-French Network:

Combines Spanish and French players, with potential inclusion of Portuguese players soon.

Austria-Finland Network:

A unique network combining players from Austria and Finland.

iPoker's Past Endeavors in the North American Market

While iPoker has explored various markets globally, one notable exception is the North American market. Although there was a small-scale attempt post-Black Friday with the launch of Calshark, a play-money site in collaboration with the now-defunct California Online Poker Association (COPA) and Scientific Games, the venture dissolved over a year later.

Likely Partners for iPoker in North America

iPoker eyes Ontario, Canada's largest province, for entry and has expressed intentions to launch online poker there. The company contemplates potential partnerships with multiple skins, including NorthStar Bets, Bet365, and Coolbet. For iPoker to establish a presence in the US or Ontario, forming partnerships with land-based casinos or reputable online gaming companies is crucial.

Predicting Potential Partners

The challenge lies in predicting potential partners in the US. Based on criteria such as market access, brand reputation, a substantial customer base, and poker expertise, iPoker might consider partnering with entities like Bet365, DraftKings, FanDuel, Hard Rock Bet, Fanatics, and Wynn.

The Landscape of Regulated US Online Poker Market

The regulated US online poker market is currently shaped by three key operators: WSOP/888 network, BetMGM, and PokerStars. Phil Galfond’s Run It Once Poker is also gearing up to enter the market, facilitated by a partnership with Rush Street Interactive. The potential entry of both Run It Once Poker and iPoker may provide online poker players in the US with four or five options to choose from.

Despite the challenge of predicting the exact timeline for iPoker's entry in the US, Dahl expressed optimism, stating, “I am optimistic about making significant progress sooner rather than later.”

Q&A Section

Q1: What sets iPoker apart from other networks entering the US market?
A1: iPoker operates as a B2B network, emphasizing the need for partnerships with operators to achieve critical mass.

Q2: Who are the likely partners for iPoker in Ontario?
A2: iPoker has hinted at prospective brands like [NorthStar Bets](https://www.pokervip.com/deals/ipoker/guts) for Ontario entry.

Q3: What is the potential impact of iPoker's entry into the US market?
A3: iPoker's entry, along with Run It Once Poker, may provide US players with more options, fostering market growth.


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