Paddy Power will not participate with online gaming when the New Jersey market opens this month, it confirmed to investors and analysts Thursday, citing concerns over the highly competitive market.
“We see a fragmented poker liquidity—at least five separate pools of liquidity,” stated Paddy CEO Patrick Kennedy. “We see a highly competitive B2C landscape, and a lot of strong US brands launching.”
He also mentioned concerns over the continued presence of gray market operators that will hamper the regulated launch, citing “less restrictions … than we would have liked ideally.”
The group plans to continue to explore possibilities in the US, and added that “it does have the potential to be a valuable market” for the company.
Paddy Power has applied for a license in New Jersey, and earlier this month the NJ Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) announced that is was eligible for a transactional waiver. However, the company has not yet formed the requisite partnership with a brick-and-mortar casino, so its debut this month was not expected.
Primarily a brick-and-mortar and online sportsbook, Paddy also offers online poker, casino games and slots, mostly using Playtech software, for its European audience.
The group has also passed suitability hearings in Nevada, and similarly has not pursued this US market opportunity.
A number of transactional waivers have been issued to casino-operator partnerships, including 888, Ultimate Poker, PartyPoker and many more. Five permits have been issued to casinos: The Borgata, Tropicana, Golden Nugget and the two Trump properties. A further update to the list is expected from the DGE later today.
The soft-launch for igaming in New Jersey starts tomorrow.