Sign Up For Card Player's Newsletter And Free Bi-Monthly Online Magazine


Poker Training

Newsletter and Magazine

Sign Up

Find Your Local

Card Room


Poker Business News From Europe

by Rebecca McAdam |  Published: Mar 01, 2010


Poker No Longer a Sport in Ukraine
Ukraine’s Justice Ministry has changed its decision to include poker on the list of sports recognised in Ukraine as the game is said to conflict with Ukraine law which prohibits gambling business and participation in gambling.

A similar decision was made in Russia in July when, after all the card rooms and casinos were closed, the Russian Ministry of Sports and Tourism officially excluded poker from its list of sports. With this upheaval, the European Poker Tour was moved from Moscow in Russia to Kiev in Ukraine.

Ukrainian poker tournaments had just begun to flourish, so this decision could leave poker’s future there very unclear.

Montel Williams Sued Over Poker League Deal
Guardian Gaming, a Malta-based online gaming operator, is suing U.S. talk show star Montel Williams.

In July 2008, Guardian Gaming took a 25 percent stake in International Poker League, which the court documents say is an “alter ego” of Williams, and paid him $300,000 the following month to host it.
Montel Williams
Court documents show that International Poker League terminated the agreement in September 2008 and under the terms of the agreement the $300,000 was due to be refunded to Guardian Gaming. The company says Williams acknowledged its entitlement to a refund but the money has not been forthcoming and it is challenging Williams in the Nevada courts to have the sum returned.

Betclic Owner Buys Everest Poker as Revenues Drop
Mangas Gaming, owner of French betting site Betclic, and Scandinavian site Expekt, has taken over 60 percent of European online poker room, Everest Poker, in a deal worth $100 million. The deal sees the site’s previous owner, Gigamedia, retaining a 40 percent share.

The site, which employs 250 people, is expected to absorb Betclic Poker players, creating a market leader in the soon-to-be deregulated French market.

Everest Poker has also announced a steep drop in its poker revenues for the second and third quarters of 2009. The company saw revenue in the second quarter fall 36 percent to $17.4 million compared to a year earlier.

Third quarter revenue fared no better dropping 33 percent to $15.8 million compared to the same period of 2008. This figure was down 9 percent from the second quarter of 2009. Figures elsewhere, for both active and new depositing real-money customers, have also declined.

GigaMedia said the drop reflected “the impact of the adverse economic climate in Europe”.

Ladbrokes Enters Italian Poker Market
After receiving a license from the Italian regulator in late 2009, Ladbrokes confirmed that it would enter the burgeoning Italian poker market in early 2010, with plans to then expand into bingo and casino games also.

Chief executive officer, Chris Bell said, “We are committed to expanding the international reach of our online business and Italy is an excellent regulated market opportunity.”

Companies such as PartyGaming and Gioco Digitale have made significant strides in the fast-growth market since it was deregulated. Currently online poker operators can only offer players tournaments but this is due to change this year as cash games come on stream.

PartyPoker Player Numbers On the Up
A trading update from PartyGaming Plc, parent company of, has said player numbers and net daily revenues are up this quarter compared to last.

Jim Ryan, chief executive officer of the company said, “Returning poker to growth has been a key focus for us. We are pleased to see that the initiatives introduced throughout the year are now feeding through into both operational and financial performance with increased player numbers and average net daily revenues versus the previous quarter, despite continued competition from illegal U.S.-facing sites and the difficult macroeconomic climate.”

In 2009, PartyGaming bought the World Poker Tour brand and earned net revenue of $102.6 million from poker in the first six months of last year.

PKR Launches Nuts and Loaded Online Poker Sites has partnered up with IPC Media to launch poker sites for two of IPC’s biggest magazines, Nuts and Loaded.

PKR marketing director, Simon Prodger said, “We think that the collaboration with IPC Media is a perfect matchup of brands. Nuts and Loaded readers are spot on for us, and by having branded environments within our game, we offer them a unique poker experience.”

Nuts publisher, Clair Porteous said, “Between them, Nuts and Loaded have a combined audience of more than 1.7 million monthly unique users online. Both are iconic men’s lifestyle brands and collaborating with a partner of the calibre and scale of PKR really ticks all the boxes.”
Iphone & Chips
Pro Poker Log App Available for iPhone
Deep Powder Software has launched a new poker app for iPhone and iPod Touch which allows players to keep an organised record of all their poker sessions.

Costing $7.99, the app can track and organise variables such as time of game, fees/rake paid, blind levels, and location of games, and can graphically represent these for the user. The information can be readily emailed and backed up for future reference.

Gordon F. Craig who runs Deep Powder Software said, “I came to realise that the only way to become a winning player and make any money was to keep a log of wins, losses, and notes from every game. Then a player can analyze how he plays and constantly learn from his own style.”