Back in July, the gaming regulators of several European countries decided to sign an agreement to create online poker liquidity sharing between regulated gaming markets. The countries included in the agreement were France, Italy, Span and Portugal. ARJEL, the French gaming regulator, stated at the time that they would be setting the basis for cooperation between the signing Authorities and creating the necessary steps within each jurisdiction to effectively see online poker liquidity take place. Fast forward to this week, and PokerStars France has become the first to earn a shared liquidity license.
According to igamingbusiness.com, the French division of PokerStars is the first to be given approval to join the shared project of online poker liquidity. The application of PokerStars France was approved by ARJEL, with the online poker room now able to link player pools in Spain, Italy and Portugal when the option goes live.
Official authorization was provided by ARJEL to Reel Malta Ltd, which is the operator behind PokerStars France and a division of the PokerStars parent company, the Rational Group. ARJEL has stated that the operator has to be sure the brand only shares player liquidity in the borders of approved jurisdictions that are included in the project. Approval must also be provided for the software of PokerStars by gambling regulators in the other regions. Any changes made to PokerStars France must be made known to ARJEL if the changes are in relation to the participation within the liquidity project.
The goal of the share liquidity is to see each of the four countries receive an increase in poker revenues. Early next year, France, Spain and Portugal will begin the project while Italy is set to join at a later date. The PokerStars brand is the only online poker operator offering services in Portugal and has licensing in the other three countries, the only company to have licensing in all four countries to date.
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