PokerStars tries to enter California to offer online poker
PokerStars, world's largest poker site, has recently announced an agreement with California's gambling alliance called The Morongo Band of Mission Indians (the Commerce Club, the Hawaiian Gardens Casino, and the Bicycle Casino) in yet another attempt to enter the American market and offer online poker to the U.S. citizens.
The agreement will see Rational Group combine forces with the aforementioned entities in order to offer online poker to Californians if and when it becomes regulated in the state. Also, a representative from Rational Group has confirmed that PokerStars will not only provide a platform and services but will become the front-facing brand of the partnership as well.
Even though PokerStars is likely to have some trouble getting into the market when it's regulated due to the issues with 'bad actor' clauses (the company refused to leave the States in the post-UIGEA period until 'Black Friday'), the results of the recent hearings on gambling in California suggest that PokerStars still might be able to pull this one off.
The official press-release says that Rational Group will "serve as the subcontractor providing the online poker platform and related services for a real money online poker website to be licensed, owned, and operated by an entity owned by the Tribe and the card clubs". Which means that even though it's too early to tell whether PokerStars will be able to offer online poker in California directly to their customers, their presence in the American market becomes more real.
Well, at least it seems more real than several previous attempts of the company to tackle the legislative barrier on its way back to the United States (PokerStars failed to get licensed in both Nevada and New Jersey). Do you think they are going to make it this time around?