Friday, March 22 12:01:23
888 could launch an online gaming offering in Nevada, home to gambling centre Las Vegas, as soon as May, a source said after the group won the first ever U.S. license to be awarded to an internet betting firm.
The license to operate in Nevada granted to London-listed 888 Holdings Plc is the first time an internet gambling company has been licensed in the United States, which banned online gambling in 2006.
Following receipt of the license, 888's launch of online poker in Nevada could come as early as mid-second quarter, a source close to the situation said today.
Revenue from Nevada alone is likely to be limited, but the license is a key step for 888 in its development in the wider regulated U.S. online gaming market.
"This is an historic moment for 888. This is the first time a company uniquely providing online gaming has been licensed by any U.S. jurisdiction," Chief Executive Brian Mattingley said.
The decision, announced on Thursday, had been expected after the Nevada state gaming control board voted to recommend approval earlier this month.
888 has already signed a deal with Las Vegas operator Treasure Island to launch online poker under its own brand in Nevada.
It has also a signed a non-exclusive deal with Las Vegas casino brand Caesars to power the web spin-off of Caesars' World Series of Poker tournament, and has agreed a deal with slot machine operator WMS to give it an online presence.
888 has said that, while U.S. income could eventually be considerable, it will likely not have a significant bottom-line impact until 2015. Reuters