Update:Black Friday Ramifications
The future looks drab for some operators in the US.
A couple of weeks ago the internet gambling industry in the U.S realised with a bang how fickle it really is. April the 15 or better known as Black Friday in the U.S. will forever be etched in the memories of those parties involved in the internet poker industry.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) seized many of the U.S’ major internet poker websites. Many top executives, officials of processing firms and the founders face indictments by U.S. authorities.
PokerStars, Full Tilt, Absolute Poker and Ultimate Bet decided to close their business as a result of federal actions brought in against them by the U.S government and rather focus instead on their projects outside the United States. Just after exiting the U.S market, white-label Rival casino also decided to stop accepting new players from the U.S, existing players can still wager here. Recently AdamEve Poker also decided to cease its operations in the U.S. Taking the present climate of the internet casino industry in the U.S into account many affiliate companies are now out of business.
However, as affected internet casinos experienced a severe decline in their financial figures, there are those who succeeded in exploiting the situation caused by the Black Friday’s actions to their benefit. Internet casinos such as Bodog, Cake Poker and so forth bolstered their presence in the U.S. market, taking advantage of the withdrawal of their major rivals.
Yet many players were concerned when the news of the indictments first hit the headlines, believing that they will not receive the funds they deposited. The indicted sites and the Department of Justice (DoJ) remedied the situation to temporary unfreeze seized domains until players received their cash. PokerStars started paying off players, while the Cereus network and FullTilt are still working their way through the minefield of details pertaining to this process.
To compound matters further the feature looks bleak for the indicted internet poker sites’ employees, in particular those employed by the Cereus Network, it’s reported that the company had to retrench 80 percent of its staff in Costa Rica. Unhappy former employees are the reason why the company’s premises, along with PokerStars’ offices and a various private estates were raided by Costa Rican OIJ on the 6 May, causing much conjecture all over the industry.
It remains to be seen whether or not these actions had something to do with Black Friday. One thing’s for sure as of the 15 April the industry is an entire different place altogether.[addtoany]