PokerStars New Jersey is the most popular online poker destination in the state. After just one full week of operation, the network is averaging more cash game players on its seven-day average than the WSOP/888 and Party Borgata rooms.
The two competitor platforms have been catering to residents within the state’s borders since 2013, but the world’s largest iPoker network had no struggle in quickly becoming the dominating force in the densely populated region.
According to the latest data provided by PokerScout, pokerstarsnj.com is averaging 170 players around the clock, 30 more than WSOP/888 and a 75-person premium on Party Borgata. When it comes to peak numbers, PokerStars New Jersey is dwarfing the competition in even more dramatic fashion, the room reaching 452 players over the last 24 hours to WSOP/888’s 395 and Party’s 283.
Worldwide, the PokerStars dot com network averages 17,000 players and routinely eclipses 30,000 for daily peaks. However, per New Jersey iGaming law, residents are prohibited from playing at those robust international tables.
When the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) issued its Transactional Waiver with Conditions to allow PokerStars’ parent company Amaya to offer interactive gaming, the state hoped the approval would assist the struggling online poker market.
PokerStars’ first week seems to be satisfying those goals and should lead to higher tax revenues for the state in time, but the traffic increase is being accommodated by a dark cloud.
Quebec’s investigation into the alleged insider trading activities by Amaya CEO David Baazov is unquestionably the last thing DGE Executive Director David Rebuck needed in relation to his division’s Amaya approval.
Rebuck’s months-long probe of Amaya’s $4.9 billion acquisition of the Oldford Group and its Rational Group subsidiaries PokerStars and Full Tilt concluded that no “derogatory information” could be found relating to Amaya personnel or other qualifying entities connected to the company.
Of course, the DGE staff is not financial or securities regulators, so missing Baazov’s alleged trading misconduct certainly doesn’t rest on their shoulders. However, it does cast a shadow on the overall corporate climate at the Amaya offices in Montreal, Canada.
Data on how PokerStars New Jersey’s traffic relates to financial performance won’t be released until mid-April. At that time, it will also become known whether PokerStars’ partnership with the Resorts Casino Hotel in Atlantic City will translate into better revenues for the historic brick-and-mortar property.
Owner Morris Bailey opened an iGaming Lounge at the beachfront casino last April. The nation’s first physical parlor devoted to online gambling, the 1,000-square-foot area consists of 22 stations for gamblers to place Internet wagers.
“With interactive elements positioned throughout the room, Resorts iGaming Lounge features social gaming communal tables, sitting areas with tablet stands, and touchscreen displays and kiosks for a one-of-a-kind gaming experience,” the casino website states.
The area, which resembles that of an Apple Store, has been criticized by some who wonder why a visitor would travel to a casino to play at a virtual one. Bailey is likely using the room as a promotional tool to display the ease of online gaming, hoping current Resorts visitors will play online once their trip ends.