Real-money online poker has been in the works since last year in the Silver State but residents are still waiting. Brian Mattingley, CEO of 888 Holdings, believes the wait is almost over.
Mattingley visited with Reuters on Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013, and news broke that the company believes they will launch online poker in Nevada by summer. The Nevada Gaming Control Board must approve the 888 software before it can go live through three online gaming partners in the state. The provider software has been undergoing testing since last year by the control board.
888 owns and operates 888poker outside of the U.S. The online poker platform for Caesars Interactive Entertainment and its World Series of Poker-branded online poker site, as well as WMS Industries, a slot machine manufacturer, and Treasure Island. All three companies have nonexclusive business-to-business deals in Nevada with 888.
Last year Mattingley told PokerNews.com that 888 will be "well positioned" to perform strongly in Nevada. On Tuesday, he told Reuters that the company is also looking for approval to operate in New Jersey. In February New Jersey became the third state to legalize online gambling.
More than 20 companies have been approved by the Nevada Gaming Commission for interactive gaming licenses, including: MGM Resorts International, Boyd Gaming, Fertitta Interactive, and the Golden Nugget. There has been no official launch date set by any of the licensed operators for online poker. Speculation puts online poker in Nevada by the end of the year.
Mattingley went on to say that starting in 2015, the company will begin to see how much of an impact the U.S. poker market has on its bottom line. The marketing budget in the U.S. will be increased by 888 next year as the competition for a share of the online poker market heats up.