PokerStars Approved to Offer Online Poker in Pennsylvania

December 2nd, 2018 by Jon Sofen

It’s official. PokerStars has been granted permission to operate in Pennsylvania once the state’s poker sites go live, likely in 2019.

PokerStars Pennsylvania

PokerStars was given the green light by state lawmakers to operate in Pennsylvania. (Image: pokerstars.com)

A date hasn’t yet been set for an online gambling launch in the Keystone State. Last year, lawmakers finally passed legislation to legalize internet casinos after coming close the previous couple of years.

But Pennsylvania residents are still waiting to play. Many anticipated a summer or fall launch, but the licensing process has taken longer than expected.

PokerStars in Pennsylvania

Currently, New Jersey is the only state PokerStars operates in. But the world’s largest and most popular online poker site might soon have a larger presence in the US.

And that’s good news for the online poker industry in America. However, some lawmakers in certain states have fought to keep the poker site out. That includes California, a state that won’t likely pass internet gambling legislation in the near future. Some politicians in the Golden State oppose approving a license for any poker site that operated in the US prior to Black Friday, which would eliminate PokerStars.

Pennsylvania lawmakers took a different stance. On Wednesday, the Keystone State approved a license for the online poker giant. The Stars Group, along with Mohegan Sun Pocono, were granted permission to launch gaming sites. No launch date has been set but many speculate early to mid 2019.

The new PA law requires that only land-based are eligible for iGaming licenses. But that won’t stop PokerStars because the poker site is partnering with Mount Airy Casino, which is located in Mt. Pocono.

The Stars Group also recently announced a partnership deal with Nevada-based Eldorado Resorts, which could bring the poker site to more states in the future.

Name Recognition

When PokerStars entered the struggling New Jersey online poker market in 2016, many expected it would lead to a revival. Some even felt the other poker sites in the state would take a hit given the new competition.

But that hasn’t been the case on either front. Not only is PokerStars failing to dominate the New Jersey market, the world’s largest poker site hasn’t done much, if anything, to help the state increase online poker revenue.

So, it’s tough to predict the impact PokerStars will have on Pennsylvania’s poker industry. In May, New Jersey, Delaware, and Nevada agreed to a WSOP.com player pool merger hoping to spike revenue for each state. Thus far, revenues have remained stagnant.

PokerStars has not been approved for a license in Nevada, which is nearing five years of offering legal online poker in a state previously dominated by their unregulated rival.

Online poker is a difficult industry to predict.

11 Responses to “PokerStars Approved to Offer Online Poker in Pennsylvania”

  1. muse713 says:

    1 state at a time

  2. belladonna05 says:

    “In May, New Jersey, Delaware, and Nevada agreed to a WSOP.com player pool merger hoping to spike revenue for each state. Thus far, revenues have remained stagnant.”
    You don’t need a crystal ball to tell you, that unless you offer a world wide online market, the player count will never amount to a much to reach a profitable level.

  3. acidburnfx says:

    The story is always the same, the company says that with the legalization of the game, poker will help the state to increase its revenues (politicians get animated, as for common citizens this is another story) and after we see what happens in practice.

  4. bruno13xs says:

    Congratulations to pokerstar for getting another license for new players who can play a high quality poker online that is welcome the new players of Pennsylvania

  5. RicardoInciarte says:

    Excellent news for poker players in the United States, because little by little online poker is becoming present and even more so when it comes to Pokerstars which is one of the most important rooms in the world.
    Cool.!

  6. Malnitruth says:

    Stars are coming back!!! New York should be next on the list 8)

  7. okeedokalee says:

    Well they can handle dope being legal, online poker should be legal in all States, then recreational players can do can enjoy their hobby in the land of the free.

  8. Bricxjo says:

    It sure would be nice to have it come to New Mexico, but we are a bit behind the times. I imagine that it would take a long time for PokerStars to come here I really do like the games and interface on PokerStars. I am wishing good luck to all the poker players in Pennsylvania. I looked up the other place that was licensed, Mohegan Sun Pocono, I am wondering if they are getting a deal with someone that is not announced yet. Otherwise they seem like a small outfit. It would be interesting to find out what they do with the opportunity.

  9. RidersFan says:

    This is a small step forward. Hopefully this will eventually lead to the US being able to join the main player pool as state after state allows online poker. It would add a lot of new players and make games at the micro and low stakes much softer than the currently are.

  10. Arromask says:

    Many players in Russia are waiting for the return of American poker players in the poker room Pokerstars, if I understand correctly that after licensing they will also be able to participate in tournaments with us

  11. AzdajaD says:

    What a wonderful news!But it should be legal everywhere…
    Poker Stars shoves that he is still best online poker sites!

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