European Shared Online Poker Liquidity a Reality for Spaniard and French PokerStars Players10 months ago
Finally, after years of activism and false promises, Spain and France share online poker liquidity, PokerStars becomes the first online poker room to offer games for the promising new shared market.
When France's Autorité de régulation des Jeux en ligne (ARJEL) released a statement promising shared liquidity in the next few weeks many savvy analysts took it along the lines of "some time in early-to-mid 2018, maybe", turns out this time politicians actually meant what they said.
On January 15, just a few weeks after ARJEL made its announcement, Spain's Dirección General de Ordenación del Juego (DGOJ) announced that the shared online poker liquidity resolution was to enter into effect on January 16 and it has been since published on the official state bulletin.
You can read the full bulletin entry here (in Spanish).
While the Spaniard players are still not happy about how their government taxes poker players, they joined their French colleagues on Twitter to celebrate the news.
Translation: Finally... Spain and France share online poker tables, with bigger tournaments and soon the Italians and Portuguese will join. gogogo for the big fat prize pools.
Translation: Playing some Omaha on the .es with the French on the .fr. They are already being snooty against the Spaniards. Good day for online poker in Spain. Though remember that the taxes are still the same.
PokerStars Becomes the First To provide Franco-Hispanic tables
PokerStars jumped at the market before everybody else and got the first shared liquidity license just in time for the deal to enter into effect, At the time of writing, every game mode is available for players in both countries except for Spin&Go which is still segregated.
They were ready with promotions such as the €5 million guaranteed France-España Hold"em (FRESH) series, which will be available to French and Spaniard players only from January 28–February 11. The FRESH Main Event winners will also get a Platinum Pass.
This is a big push, though if Spaniard poker forums threads are any indication, many Spaniard players are still waiting anxiously for Winamax.es to make its move.
Winamax announced its entry into the Hispanic poker market back in October with Adrian Mateos as its spokesperson. While they will be late to the party, they will likely be a force to be reckoned with once they join the shared liquidity party.
What does this mean for South European Poker?
Mikel López de Torre, President of Jdigital, a Spaniard lobbying group for the online gambling industry said of the decision:
"This change will allow for poker to get back to a double-digit growth in 2019, to a 20-30% like other segments have done with regulation. Poker will go back to become a locomotive of the [gambling] sector. Hopefully, thanks to the shared liquidity, in 2 or 3 years online poker will break the 100 million euro barrier of [gross gaming revenue]."
*Translated From Spanish.
Portugal will eventually join in, even if it's at a snail's pace, but Italy is still a battleground. Stay tuned to PokerTube for more of this exciting poker market as this story develops.
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