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Online poker: the biggest winner during the coronavirus pandemic

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The gambling industry has experienced both extremes during the coronavirus pandemic. On one side, land-based casinos and sportsbooks have been hit extremely hard.

The effects of lockdowns, quarantines, travel restrictions and social distancing measures have meant casinos have been forced to close for more than three months – and the financial consequences have been devastating. From Las Vegas to New Jersey, London to Macau – casinos all around the world are posting all-time low revenues.

Similarly, the lockdown of the vast majority of professional sport has seen sportsbooks grind to a halt, with sports betting companies in the United Kingdom and Europe experiencing slumps between 40 and 60 percent since March.

While the return of sport has helped the sector rebound to an extent, the cancellation of Euro 2020 and the Tokyo Olympics have presented other challenges as such major, international events are prime opportunities for sportsbook companies to attract new customers.

However, while land-based casinos and sportsbooks have felt the full force of the Covid-19 outbreak, other areas of the gambling world have thrived.

Online gambling in the United States, the United Kingdom, and mainland Europe has seen a record surge in the past few months as the very reasons that have damaged land-based casinos – such as lockdowns and social distancing – have directly benefited online operations.

For instance, New Jersey recorded record revenues in May for online casino betting, as companies, like BetAmerica, who offers this service profiting from the lockdown. Meanwhile The Stars Group in the UK reported a 92 percent increase in revenue the same month compared to 12 months ago.

While slots and gambling games have seen a major rise during the past few months, the big winner has been online poker.

Three of the four states in the US with legal online poker operations have reported a huge spike in revenues, while the fourth – Nevada – has not released the figures, but one can safely assume that they, too, have experienced an increase.

New Jersey saw online poker revenue jump from $1.57 million in April 2019 to $5.2m 12 months later, while Pennsylvania enjoyed 68 percent and Delaware 48 percent increases when comparing the same two months.

The trends are similar in Europe. In France, for example, online poker revenue is up 44.1 percent compared to the same month last year while UK-based gambling giant 888 has seen its share price surge.

Of all the online gambling games, poker has been uniquely placed to benefit from the current situation.

As friends and family members have been kept apart, poker has been a popular means of socializing. It explains the increased popularity of Poker Stars’ Private Home Games and the rush of competitors to launch similar services.

“It’s only natural. People are stuck at home, they’re bored and even though there are more live poker options starting right now, people are just hesitant to jump right back in because of the health risk implications,” said professional poker player Danielle Andersen.

Then there has been the move online for prestigious professional events which would otherwise have been cancelled or postponed.

It was announced in June that the World Series of Poker – which had been scheduled to take place from May 26 to July 15 at the Rio Convention Center in Las Vegas – would be held online throughout July through to the first week of September.

By taking the 2020 WSOP online, it has also increased the size of the player pool, allowing players from outside the United States to compete for WSOP bracelets.

While poker great Daniel Negreanu said the move online was a “classic case of making the best of it”, it has still allowed professional poker to continue – a luxury many other sports and competitions do not have.

Meanwhile, professional poker’s other flagship event, PokerStars Players No Limit Hold’em Championship, has been canceled.

Aware of the surge in popularity of online poker during these unprecedented times, operators have poured greater investment, marketing, and technology into their poker operations, which will only benefit the game in the long term and help attract and retain more customers.

As life gradually returns to normal, online poker will naturally see a relative decline in interest as millions of people are no longer confined to their homes and professional players are once again able to attend live events.

But what this pandemic has shown is that poker has not only been able to survive under such trying circumstances but has thrived.

News

Gaming Innovation Group Media Arm (GiG Media): Official Policy in place for joining QMRA

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Gaming Innovation Group Media Arm (GiG Media): Official Policy in place for joining QMRA

 

GiG Media is one of the most well-known international iGaming Affiliate companies—the listed iGaming giant places high value on regulatory compliance in all active markets. The company acknowledges that QMRA is a valuable tool for ensuring better compliance.

GIG Media has decided to implement a strategy that websites operating in markets serviced by QMRA will be required to adhere to the Quality Mark. Over the next few months, GiG Media will begin the process of ensuring compliance with the QMRA team. GiG Media has already partnered with QMRA on its websites targeting the Swedish and UK markets.

QMRA is very happy about this. Working together with the GiG specialists will improve the Quality Mark as a whole.

Quote by Milorad Matejic, COO, GiG Media: “Gig Media is pleased to cooperate with QMRA in enhancing our compliance initiatives. Adhering to their standards on our websites where QMRA services the market demonstrates to the market our commitment to compliance at Gig Media.”

Quote by Steven Vrolijk, LL.M., QMRA Director: “QMRA is a follow up for our Dutch Quality Mark KVA. KVA has been very successful in the Netherlands, which made our choice for expanding internationally easy. We now service a lot of geo’s, among which Ontario, Sweden, Germany, Denmark and more.

GiG was one of the first KVA members, so we know each other already. GiG knows our work and our serious efforts. I am happy to say that our KVA evidence led them to be the first to make QMRA official company policy.

I am proud of this as well: we just launched in February (2024) and GiG being one of the largest affiliate companies out there, this is a huge step!

As we continue to expand internationally, we’re excited to welcome more partners committed to excellence. Join us in setting the standard for compliance in the iGaming Affiliate Industry”

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Affiliate Success

Casino Guru wins Affiliate of the Year at AffPapa Awards for third consecutive time

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Casino Guru wins Affiliate of the Year at AffPapa Awards for third consecutive time

 

Casino Guru, the premier platform for online casino reviews and industry insights, is thrilled to announce its victory in the “Affiliate of the Year” category at the prestigious AffPapa iGaming Awards 2024.
This marks the third consecutive year that Casino Guru has received this esteemed recognition, cementing its position as a leader in the affiliate industry.
The AffPapa Awards celebrate excellence in the iGaming sector, highlighting outstanding affiliates, operators, and B2B providers. Casino Guru’s consistent triumph in the “Affiliate of the Year” category is a testament to its commitment to transparency, innovation, and player safety. The platform, known for its comprehensive reviews and user-friendly interface, continues to set industry standards, ensuring fair play and informed choices for online gamblers worldwide
Over the past year, Casino Guru has achieved unprecedented growth and several notable milestones. The platform has maintained its status as the largest online casino database, with reviews of over 6,200 casinos. In a commitment to transparency and player protection, more than 450 online casinos have adjusted their terms and conditions based on Casino Guru’s recommendations. Additionally, the online gambling forum has surpassed 5,000 monthly posts, reflecting its strong community engagement.
“We are honored and delighted to receive this award for the third time,” said Ivona Kulichova, Casino & Affiliate Communication Lead. “This recognition reflects our unwavering dedication to providing high-quality, trustworthy information to our users and partners. We extend our gratitude to the AffPapa Awards committee and our incredible team for their hard work and passion.”
Casino Guru’s dedication to responsible gaming initiatives has been a cornerstone of its success. Partnerships with organizations like Mindway AI further this mission, emphasizing responsible gaming practices. The Casino Guru Awards recognize the industry’s top operators and professionals who align with Casino Guru’s mission to make online gambling safer.
Additionally, the Casino Guru Academy has introduced new courses on key industry topics, such as player verification, ESG in gambling, customer complaint handling, and affiliate management, highlighting its commitment to professional development and high standards. The Global Self-Exclusion Initiative, which includes the Self-Exclusion Standards project developed with international experts and City, University of London, exemplifies Casino Guru’s proactive approach to player safety.
The Complaint Resolution Center has also achieved remarkable success. Over the past year, 12,161 complaints were published and 3,428 resolved, saving players over $11 million. This represents a significant increase in both the number of complaints handled and the amount of money recovered for players, underscoring Casino Guru’s role in protecting consumer interests.
Amidst these achievements, Casino Guru remains steadfast in its mission to provide comprehensive and reliable information to the online gambling community. The company is committed to continuous innovation, responsible gambling practices, and fostering a trustworthy and engaging online environment for its visitors and the broader public.
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Awards

Winners Announced at the First Annual Golden Boomerang Awards 2024 in Cyprus

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Winners Announced at the First Annual Golden Boomerang Awards 2024 in Cyprus

 

The 11 most significant participants in the Golden Boomerang Awards traffic tournament were awarded heavyweight golden statuettes for contributing to the iGaming industry. The tournament is set to become an annual, and looking forward to the 2025 season

The winners across 11 nominations were named and honored at the 2024 Golden Boomerang Awards Ceremony, organized by Boomerang Partners in Cyprus. More than 150 major affiliate marketing representatives from around the globe visited an exclusive, new, first-in-industry event designed to recognize affiliates.

The Golden Boomerang Awards incorporated a full-scale award event with a red-carpet experience. Boomerang Partners is the first company in the industry to create such an award, offering affiliates a one-of-a-kind awarding ceremony participation from the partner program. The ceremony was opened by Ivan Krainov, co-founder of Boomerang: “The Golden Boomerang Awards is a fantastic initiative for our affiliate program. It’s an exciting opportunity for me to have my debut in the public eye, as I wouldn’t want to miss the chance to engage with our partners at this event. The Golden Boomerang Awards is our expression of gratitude to the partners who contribute immensely to the growth of Boomerang Partners.”

The awarding ceremony featured real rewards – actual golden statuettes, emphasizing the value of winning and partnership. The ceremony included the best options of modern live events: a beach party in the morning, and an awards ceremony in the evening — all with high-level networking opportunities, entertainment, live performances, and a DJ set, creating a festival atmosphere befitting an honored celebration.

“We’ve worked a lot with Boomerang Partners over the past year. It took us a couple of years to reach this level, and it’s just the culmination of our efforts over these years. This award has exceeded our expectations, and a big deal for us. We’re looking forward to next year and possibly winning the next Golden Boomerang Award, — said Julian Pfennig, co-founder of Apex Media Ltd, the grand winner of the Golden Boomerang Awards. — Boomerang has been one of our top partners. They have a lot of brands and frequently launch new ones, so it never gets stale or boring. And we’re having a wonderful time at the Golden Boomerang Awards Ceremony: one winner after another, with spectacular shows between the nominations. The nominations themselves are exciting. So, yeah, this is a big show, and we’re enjoying it a lot.”

 

2024 Golden Boomerang Awards Winners:

  • Winner: Apex Media Ltd
  • Rising Star: iGaming Awards (iGamingTeam)
  • Most Innovative Campaign: IT Universe (Unbesiegbar)
  • Best SEO Traffic: Media24 (AffMedia)
  • Best PPC Traffic: Britex (Amirah&Co)
  • Best Casino Traffic: MashaMedia (Unicorns)
  • Best Sportsbook Traffic: Creatus Media (FTDeez)
  • Best Quality Traffic: Inovatiq (HighRoller Gaming)
  • Best Ambassador: G.Partners
  • Best Affiliate: Aviate Leads (Avia Traf)
  • People’s Choice: CasinoGuru (StarGlide)

“We plan to make the Golden Boomerang Awards an annual event. And right from the start they set a high level – for the final event and results. Today guests from all continents flew to the ceremony. These are the winners, partners and top-leaders of the tournament. We have brought together a great professional community. We invited our partners to enhance their networking experience with enjoyable and productive interactions,”said Vitalii Prokofev, CEO at Boomerang Partners.

As the Golden Boomerang Awards 2024 concludes, plans are already underway for next year’s event. Continuing its annual tradition, the Golden Boomerang Awards will return in 2025, once again offering unique opportunities to Boomerang Partners.

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Offering comprehensive coverage on all aspects of the gaming sector, our daily posts include online and land-based gaming, betting, esports, regulatory and compliance updates, and technological advancements. Regular features encompass daily news articles, press releases, exclusive interviews, and insightful event reports.

The platform also hosts industry-relevant webinars, and provides detailed reports, making it a one-stop resource for anyone seeking information about operators, suppliers, regulators, and professional services in the European gaming market. The portal's primary goal is to keep its extensive reader base updated on the latest happenings, trends, and developments within the gaming and gambling sector, with an emphasis on the European market while also covering pertinent global news. It's an indispensable resource for gaming professionals, operators, and enthusiasts alike.

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