Partypoker is one of the oldest poker rooms for American online players starting way back in 2001, and since then started growing exponentially, just to elect to abandon the US during its prime when it had almost conquered the market, due to the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act /UIGEA/.
The shareholders’ decision not to continue US operations in 2006 turned out to be a winning one, as it later allowed partypoker to legally return to the opening New Jersey market, and be one of the first to do so.
MGM/GVC Joint Venture Plan For Partypoker
Since its return in 2013, Partypoker was acquired by GVC Holdings two years later and, after the latter entered into a joint venture with MGM Resorts to create a leading sports betting and interactive gaming platform in the US, Roar Digital, restoring the leading position pre-UIGEA for the online poker platform is high on the agenda list.
The first step is the forthcoming partypoker launch on the latest GVC technology platform for New Jersey and will be followed by the addition of Pennsylvania where partypoker is expected to go live within the next 3 months.
“Party was the biggest poker network in the US prior to UIGEA. We’ve done some research and found there is some residual value in that brand to capitalize on. Our long-term plan is to be the poker market leader in the US.”Adam Greenblatt, CEO, Roar Digital
The 2018 DOJ Wire Act enforcement limits the liquidity for now, but the company relies on the expanding interstate market that started with the two-state compact between Delaware and Nevada, and later on added New Jersey, is now about to make another significant addition, Pennsylvania, the state where online poker market, based on the early numbers reported by the only operator there, PokerStars, will outperform New Jersey.
Overhaul Of The App
In November, Roar Digital introduced an upgrade to the partypoker mobile experience in New Jersey, implementing an entirely new portrait mode, a product that is currently undergoing tests with the regulator, but company’s CEO expects it to re-launch in the coming weeks.
Additionally, Greenblatt reiterated that the MGM/GVC joint venture does not see Nevada as a priority, due to the opportunities presented by the launch of sports betting in other states, and despite the joint company posted a 2019 loss of $32 million, its CEO expects Roar Digital product to be live in 11 states by the end of 2020.
The task to restore its prominence partypoker faces will be huge, as the online poker industry has changed a lot, and it is likely that the company may not be able to rely on nostalgia from the people who have fond memories dating back to the early and mid-2000’s, with the latter being no longer potential customers.