POKER

Did Asia help the global online poker market to first rise in two years?

TAGs: EGR, H2 Gambling Capital, Online Poker, PricewaterhouseCoopers

poker news round upReal-money online poker has posted its first global rise in almost two years with growth in gross gaming yield (GGY). The H2 Gambling Capital data, reported by eGR, shows that September 2012’s GGY hit €249million – an increase of 4.2 €10m compared with the same period last year. In addition to this average ring game and tournament player numbers were up to 95,600 – a 3.6percent rise year-on-year. The latter was still a lot lower than September 2010 but an improvement is an improvement.

H2 added that the data would be affected by the relaunch of Full Tilt Poker on November 6 when it expects “further year-on-year growth throughout the final quarter of the year”. We haven’t been able to get our hands on the report yet so we can’t say for definite whether the global report includes one of the fastest growing poker economies on the planet – Asia. Given that past reports from H2 have included Asian numbers then we can conclude from this one that Asia has had a big effect on the poker industry’s increasing numbers.

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) released a report similar to H2’s last year only that there’s looked at the industry as a whole and not simply poker showing that global annual growth in the industry would be 9.2 percent between 2012 and 2015. Couple this with the fact there’s reportedly “little incentive” for Asian countries to licence the region’s industry you can see why the privately held firms are making piles of cash in Asia. It also gives them a chance to offer better products and give poker the chance to thrive in the region.

We reported a matter of weeks ago that one of those at the forefront has been Bodog88, ever since they launched their poker offering in March. Players are now, in their own words, “hooked” on the game and it’s in no small part down to companies in the region tailoring their offering to players to maximize their yield in the region.

If Asia was the reason for the rise, which it realistically could be, it just continues to show why companies that can afford not to worry about regulation should have this part of the world down as a must on their destination list. Otherwise there’s a real risk of being left behind.

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