Iowa bill passes Senate; Betfair US signs deal with track; Power Poker exits US

USA flag 1Iowa’s latest online gambling industry bill received Senate majority vote in its favor and will progress to the next stage. Senators voted 29-20 to advance S.F. 2275, a bill that would allow an online poker network and provide it with a regulatory structure. Estimates are that anything from $2.9 million to $13.2 million could be pumped into the state through tax revenue alone. The bill now moves on the House, with speaker Kraig Paulsen (R-Hiawatha) stating that “nothing’s changed” and the bill will have little hope of passing.

Betfair has signed the first-ever naming rights deal with a U.S. horseracing venue. Betfair U.S. and the Hollywood Park Racing Association reached agreement on a contract that will last five years and see the course renamed “Betfair Hollywood Park.” The Los Angeles track will see the creation of the “Betfair Club” and Betfair Lounge” to accommodate VIP customers Betfair hopes it will be the next phase of big changes being seen in U.S. horseracing.

“We are deeply committed to changing US horseracing for the better and are delighted to find a partner in Hollywood Park Racing Association willing to take the bold step of trying to change every facet of the racing experience to appeal to a broader, younger audience,” said Stephen Burn, CEO of Betfair US and TVG.  “Horseracing is a wonderful sport, but it must embrace cultural change and utilize advancements in technology and presentation to survive and thrive just as other sports and entertainment industries have done.”

Power Poker is the latest site to ban U.S. players. The Cake Poker skin contacted their pool of players yesterday, according to Poker Affiliate Solutions, and it’s effective immediately. Players still on the network have been moved to fellow-Cake Network skin Colt Poker and it follows Power Poker closing to new customers last June.