Nevada/Delaware iPoker Compact Having Little ImpactSeptember 23, 2015 12:13 pm
New Jersey with a population of almost 9 million people may be able to support an online poker industry which generates around $2 million in revenues each month, but the same cannot be said for the smaller states of Nevada and Delaware. There iPoker revenues have been so underwhelming that the USA’s first regulated iPoker site, Ultimate Poker, had to shut down in Nevada leaving just one viable site, WSOP.com still operating, as Real Gaming still continues to languish in no man’s land. Likewise, Delaware’s iPoker revenues speak only of an industry in trouble, and in August the market pulled in a mere $31,248, representing a 19% fall from a year earlier.
Needless to say, liquidity is a fundamental requirement for a viable poker playing environment, and in March the states of Nevada and Delaware launched a landmark interstate gambling compact, with Delaware Gov. Jack Markell commenting at the time:
“Today is the start of an exciting time for iGaming and for Delaware. We now offer an online poker option that is more competitive and more enjoyable for its users, thanks to this collaborative effort.”
Six months later, however, and it appears the 3.6 million combined population of Nevada and Delaware is still insufficient to make the game alluring for players, and that the compact is unlikely to bear any fruit without the future participation of other US states. Case in point, the shared Delaware/Nevada iPoker network is presently showing a mere 160 cash game players according to PokerScout, and its fair to assume that most hale from the Silver State.
Suffice to say, there appears to be scant revenues around to support one online operator in Delaware, let alone three, and while they all play on the same network as different skins, each site has its own expenses associated with running their online poker rooms. With few US states seriously considering legalizing iPoker, and the bigger ones that might (California, New York and Pennsylvania) in less desperate need to join compacts with smaller states, Delaware and Nevada will inevitably continue to fall short of the critical mass they need to grow their internet poker markets.