SCIPLAY WINS CALIFORNIA INTRASTATE ONLINE POKER DEAL


SciPlay to serve as the provider for its planned intrastate Internet poker service...


THE CALIFORNIA ONLINE Poker Association (COPA) has announced that it has selected SciPlay to serve as the provider for its planned intrastate Internet poker service.

SciPlay is a joint venture from software developer Playtech Limited and American lottery firm Scientific Games Corporation while COPA consists of 29 tribal governments and 31 card clubs accounting for around 60 percent of the revenues from poker in the western state.

California is currently considering legislation in Senate Bill 40, which was introduced by State Senator Lou Correa in December and would, if passed, authorise and license intrastate online poker. In advance of such legislation being ratified, COPA stated that it will offer play-for-fun online poker from later this year in order to provide players with 'the opportunity to improve their strategies and hone their skills for free' while SciPlay is set to establish and operate the platform.

A recent study from Tim Gage, California's former Finance Director, found that authorising online poker would see the state generate more than $1.4 billion in new revenues over the next decade. This figure is 47 percent higher than previously estimated due to three of the largest operators in California, PokerStars.com, AbsolutePoker.com and FullTiltPoker.com, being barred.

"We are proud to be part of COPA's progressive efforts in California to serve the needs of poker players throughout the state," said Rick Weil, Chief Executive Officer for SciPlay.

"COPA is supremely well positioned to become a licensed operator should Internet poker become legal in the state of California and SciPlay is delighted to have the opportunity to work with COPA. This contract demonstrates the value of the Scientific Games and Playtech joint venture and we see this as the first of a number of opportunities where our combined capabilities can deliver a comprehensive solution."
 
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