News broke on Wednesday night that the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) authorized Amaya Inc. to operate its PokerStars and Full Tilt brands in the Garden State’s online gaming market. Following an unprecedented and prolonged investigation by the DGE of the Canadian gaming and online gambling company’s 2014 acquisition of PokerStars and Full Tilt, which according to Amaya involved visits to several jurisdictions where it conducts business and interviews with 70 plus individuals, DGE’s formal blessing enables the world’s largest poker business U.S. entry.
While poker players to politicians alike have applauded the move that upon Amaya’s operations launch, which at this time is unknown, adds the company to New Jersey’s other online poker providers including, Borgata, party poker, 888, and WSOP.com., it appears that PokerStars partner in Atlantic City, Resorts Digital Gaming, LLC (‘Resorts’), has been lost in the shuffle. Resorts was the very first casino to open in New Jersey back in 1978 and has maintained a long standing commitment to offering world-class casino action. Management of Resorts which features an 80,000 square-foot casino, ten restaurants, two hotel towers including 942 guest rooms, and a food court featuring five eateries, was assumed by Mohegan Gaming Advisors in the Fall of 2012.
The addition of Poker Stars to Resorts already established online offerings including MoheganSunCasino.com and ResortsCasino.com, both of which offer a wide selection of table games and casino slots, helps to diversify as well as establish it as a market leader. And in a Business Wire press release issued by Resorts, Morris Bailey, the owner of Resorts Casino Hotel said, “Our partnership with PokerStars is a testament to our commitment to offering our players the very best gaming and entertainment experience.” Bailey added that, “We are proud to join forces with PokerStars as they make their entry into the United States online gaming market, and look forward to officially launching after completion of the regulatory test period.”
Predating Amaya’s 2014 acquisition of PokerStars and Full Tilt, the partnership between Resorts and PokerStars dates back to 2013, and since then has remained caught up in the red tape of the licensing application process. Since being granted a transitional waiver by the DGE for PokerStars to conduct online gaming in New Jersey, it will now be Resorts’ exclusive online poker website. The move follows ResortsCasino.com and MoheganSunCasino.com successful launch under the Resorts online gaming license. President and CEO of Resorts Casino Hotel, Mark Giannantonio said, “We are confident that the partnership with PokerStars will boost our online gaming activities and help us emerge as the leader in New Jersey’s poker market,” adding that, “With PokerStars approved for licensed online gaming, our players will have the opportunity to experience real-money poker games from the world’s number one poker website.”