PokerStars, Nektan first to receive new Irish online betting licenses

pokerstars-nektan-irish-betting-licensesAmaya Gaming’s PokerStars brand has been issued an online sports betting license in the Republic of Ireland.

Ireland’s new online betting regime, which includes a 1% point-of-consumption tax on turnover, kicked in on Aug. 1. Operators were invited to apply for new Irish remote betting licenses In April, and the following weeks will likely bring a flurry of license announcements from the Irish Revenue Commissioners similar to what the UK endured last year after revising its own online gambling regime.

Ireland has yet to officially authorize online poker and casino games, so PokerStars says it will continue to offer those services to Irish punters via its Malta online license. Stephen Fisk, managing director of Stars’ fledgling sports betting division, said the firm was “very pleased” to have received its new Irish license and hopes to add horseracing to its list of betting options in short order.

Amaya issued a trading update last week that said revenue from its sports betting vertical, which took its first bet in March, had been “negligible” in the second quarter. Amaya will likely provide further details on its sports betting plans when it issues its official Q2 report on Aug. 13.

Also firming up their Irish plans are Gibraltar-based mobile gaming B2B specialists Nektan, which announced that it had received its remote intermediary betting license late last week. Nektan CEO David Gosen expressed pleasure at the new diploma, saying the company would “continue to seek further opportunities in Ireland as part of our ongoing growth strategy.” The news follows Nektan’s receipt of new UK Gambling Commission software and online gambling licenses in June.