Party Casino Closes in Unregulated Markets

‘Live Casino Players in Unregulated Markets Forced Out of Online Casino!’ (image source: unsplash.com)

Popular online casino, Partypoker is making the move to withdraw their services from several European countries. The parent company, GVC Holdings made the announcement in November that it plans to offer the casino only to fully licensed and regulated markets such as those in the United States and the United Kingdom.

Party Casino has a huge live dealer suite that will soon not be available for players in markets with confusing regulations and those whereby the government does not look favourably towards online gambling. This will inevitably mean that Australian and South African live dealer players that are members of the online casino will need to cash out and look for pastures new.

The reasoning behind this move is a rebranding effort by GVC. The company has changed its name to ‘Entain’ and has the goal to provide a safer gaming environment and experience for all customers. Entain is unable to do this in jurisdictions where rules and regulations surrounding online gambling and betting are ‘grey’, undefined or uncertain. With compliance at the forefront of Entains new strategy, the gaming company aims to be a strong leader in the online casino industry. To do this, CEO, Kenny Alexander, has bold plans to improve Entains position in fully regulated markets and expand its existing presence in the United States. 

During an interview for the Financial Times, CEO, Alexander made note that Entain already generates 96% of its revenue from these full-regulated markets. It is therefore only natural that the company would focus more of its efforts in countries with clearly defined regulations. A potential setback could be regulatory changes in the United Kingdom following Brexit. However, it is unlikely that the UK market will be affected due to the country’s strong Gaming Commission licensing. Furthermore, CEO, Alexander has stated that Entain is prepared to deal with any potential changes and adjust their business model accordingly. 

As mentioned previously, starting mid-December, Partypoker will be unavailable in Norway, Poland and Montenegro. All players in those countries have been unable to make deposits into their account since December 1 and on December 17 all games have been officially halted in those countries. Despite players not being able to gamble or make deposits, all players have access to their online funds and can withdraw them at any time. Furthermore, any owed cashback, loyalty points and remaining tournament dollars have been released since December 17.  

While this is sad news for many gamblers located in those European countries, it does not affect any other players with Partypoker accounts elsewhere in the world. In fact, as mentioned earlier, Entain is planning to expand their presence in the United States. Partypoker has recently been granted approval by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board to operate in the Keystone State as well as in many other states around the US. By focusing on a US customer base, the company aims to secure a much larger share of the online gambling market and become a successful industry leader. 

Round Up:

  • Partypoker and its parent company GVC (now Entain) are shutting down services in Poland, Norway and Montenegro
  • Players located in those countries have been unable to play or make deposits since December 1 
  • Partypoker has enacted a strategy to focus more on the regulated US market in an effort to secure a larger share of the online gambling industry

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