888 Holdings to Team Up with Treasure Island

March 8, 2013

Nevada’s interactive gaming club saw two additional companies took a step towards joining it last week on Wednesday, following the state’s Gaming Control Board’s unanimous approval of recommendations for domestic and foreign operators.

Gibraltar-based 888 Holdings and Treasure Island of Las Vegas, the two newest potential entries, could constitute the first additions since the signing of the legislation that transforms Nevada’s interactive gaming landscape by Governor Brian Sandoval. Assuming that the Nevada Gaming Commission approves them during its March 21 meeting, the two operators will make up the 20th and 21st companies to be awarded interactive gaming licenses within the borders.

There is a common link between the two prospective licensees:  888 Holdings plans on collaborating with the Strip-side property, Caesars Entertainment, and WMS Gaming in bringing online poker to the U.S. market using its experience in the European market and its technology.

Speaking to regulators, 888 Holdings officials said the company intends to create a website for Caesars dedicated to a World Series of Poker.

More than two hours of questioning by regulators ascertained that 888 Holdings executives are confident in the ability of their software to validate players’ ages, detect their locations, as well as pinpoint collusions among them. They also said this software could detect and head off problem gambling.

The control board called to attention the fact that 888 Holdings was one of those companies that halted the business of taking wagers from American players following the 2006 approval of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act. This is a move that puts the Gibraltar-based operator in compliance with the interactive poker law that Sandoval signed last month.

The board chairman, A.G. Burnett, said the already approved 19 companies have no need to reappear before the board for eligibility to bring poker because they are licensed for interstate gaming, and the new legislation takes away the older restrictions. In an interview following the hearing, he stated, “We’re up and running,” adding that “I think a good way to think of it is that there was a barrier to our gaming companies offering bets into other states that was created by the Legislature. That barrier has been removed. However, there are still federal and state barriers out there that they have to be cautious of and wary of. They just don’t have that Nevada stricture anymore.”

There were two other companies recommended for the board’s approval to operate as service providers for interactive gaming components.

XYVerify, New York, won approval to provide geolocation technology aimed at incorporating cellular telephone tower triangulation with GPS technology in pinpointing a prospective player’s location, validating this is within the state boundaries, as well as confirming their eligibility to play Internet poker.

Player Verify LLC, Franklin, Tenn., was also recommended for approval to work with the gaming operators and players in controlling problem gambling. It plans on creating a website that alerts the operators of the players’ desires to stop the inflow of any casino marketing information to them.


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