Tuesday October 14,2014 : M.G.M. BEHIND NEW ONLINE POKER LEGALISATION DRIVE
Let NY Play campaign appears to be primarily channeled through social media.
In what appears to be a campaign channeled primarily through social media like Facebook and Twitter, MGM Resorts International is reportedly pushing for legalised online poker in New York, reports the New York Times.
The central message of the "Let NY Play" drive is that if people in New Jersey can play poker online legally, New Yorkers should be able to as well.
"MGM, which reported nearly $10 billion in sales and revenue last year, has no casino in New York and is not among the companies vying for one of the four casino licenses the state is preparing to grant. But MGM has made no secret of its ambition to be a big player in the expanding realm of online gambling," the Times asserts, adding that the gambling group has lobbied in Albany for legalised online poker.
The newspaper says that MGM's analysis of the potential of the New York online poker market assesses its wagering value at around $110 million, all presently harvested by locally unauthorised providers.
The state of New York could be reaping tax revenues of around $50 to $60 million if such a market were legalised and matured, the study estimated…and an additional $80 million could go to state coffers from licensing fees.
But reaching mature market status and realising full potential could take time, as evidenced by the slow take-off of the online gambling legalised markets in Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware, the newspaper warns.
Alan Feldman, an executive vice president of MGM, confirmed the slow take-off, telling the New York Times:
“It’s been a little bit slower to start than some had expected. But we think over time it’s going to be exactly what they did expect and more.”
Feldman told the newspaper that MGM, which already has an interest in the Borgata branded online gambling site in New Jersey, was exploring the possibility of putting its brand directly on an online casino in the Garden State, saying: “There could be a separate site related to MGM in New Jersey.”
Meanwhile, MGM is mustering support for legalised online poker in New York, Feldman confirmed. He said that of all the casino games, poker is one where an appropriate business model has been established that is the most acceptable from a political standpoint.
There is public support for the idea too, Feldman said, pointing to a number of studies which confirm that millions of Americans gamble online, and that the pastime is now well established.
The Times reports that as of Monday evening the "Let NY Play" feed on Twitter had 347 followers and the campaign’s Facebook page had 4,948 likes.