New Jersey is one of the few states where online poker is legal and Poker Stars, like many of its competitors, is trying to plant roots in the Garden State just as it is in every other legal online poker state in the U.S.. The only problem is, new rules set out by the New Jersey Gaming Enforcement Commission are going to make it hard for PokerStars to follow through on that wish, while many of those competitors have already had their wishes granted. To explain:
Any land-based casino already operating in Atlantic City, NJ has until June 30th, 2013 to apply for a license to operate an intrastate online casino. Right now all the land-based casinos in Atlantic City are owned by three parent companies: Boyd Gaming, Caesar’s Entertainment, and Borgata. The June 30th deadline also applies to any online gaming partners of those casinos, which includes 888 Holdings and Bwin.Party. It notably does not include Poker Stars, which has been struggling to purchase the Atlantic Club in Atlantic City in the hopes that that will give it a foot in the door, so to speak, and the advantage of the June 30th deadline. Without such a scheme, Poker Stars is beholden to the deadline set for offshore enterprises and out of state enterprises (including would-be online casino partners with no partnerships, a la PokerStars) of June 29th. This gives PokerStars a double disadvantage in the struggle to stake a claim in the New Jersey online gambling game as it has to have its act together a whole day sooner and it has no land-based partner to walk in on the heels of.