Friday June 22, 2012 : NEVADA GAMING COMMISSION APPROVES FIRST TWO ONLINE POKER LICENSES (Update)
Bally and IGT lead the charge into Nevada
Having successfully won the recommendation of the Nevada Gaming Control Board last week, Bally Technologies and International Game Technology became the first to win Nevada licence approval from the Nevada Gaming Commission Thursday.
30 companies have applied for licensing on a list that includes most of the big name corporates in the online gambling industry.
Although he could not be specific regarding when actual internet operations could start, Nevada Gaming Control Board chairman Mark Lipparelli reiterated his view that online poker would be available in Nevada either late 2012 or early 2013.
The first two licensees must now ensure that their technology is vetted by a state-approved independent testing agency, a step that is unlikely to be a serious obstacle, given the extensive preparation that these major companies are known to have devoted to this critical area.
The Bloomberg news agency, quoting the H2 Gaming consultancy, reports that online gambling accounted for $32.8 billion in revenue worldwide last year, the largest contributors being Japan, the U.K. and Germany.
Land casino equipment suppliers Bally and IGT have noted on several occasions that their online gambling strategy is to offer the technology and content to other licensed operators and not compete directly with casinos themselves.
Robert Melendres, vice president of emerging businesses at IGT said in a statement: "This license, backed by our decade of interactive experience, will allow us to enable our casino partners with a way to provide wager-based online poker to their players.”