NetEnt receives permanent casino license for online casino market New Jersey
It was halfway 2014 that NetEnt announced the company’s entrance into the upcoming online casino market in New Jersey (USA). Ever since, NetEnt has been operating within the New Jersey market thanks to a transactional waiver, but after all these years, the company has now finally been granted a permanent Casino Service Industry Enterprise license from the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (NJDGE).
iGaming market US
For a long time, the United States was home to the largest iGaming market in the world, but it was in 2006 that the American Gambling Dream came to an end when the Every Port Act of 2006 was passed into law including the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA). This law had big consequences for the online gambling market in the United States and eventually lead to Black Friday, known as one of US Online gambling’s darkest days. It was on the 15th of April 2001 that some of the largest online poker sites and online casinos in the world were brought to their knees and it happened fast! Until today, Black Friday is remembered as the day that the US completely annihilated what was a flourishing industry!
The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act became successfully part of the SAFE Port Act. The UIGEA mainly provides a banking restriction forcing gambling businesses to decline any payments based on betting or online gambling, but this confusing little law made many believe that online gambling was prohibited. It wasn’t even though the UIGEA made it extremely difficult for US players to deposit money into their online casino accounts. The cheeky law eventually lead to the shutdown of some of the largest online casinos sites and online poker rooms.
As a result of Black Friday, many iGaming companies abandoned the online gambling market in the US, to return gradually after the US Department of Justice publicly reversed its position on the scope of the 1961 Wire Act in December 2011 which allowed states to implement intrastate regulations. After many attempts to introduce one all-encompassing federal law regarding online gambling failed, some US states introduced intrastate regulations of their own.
So far, this resulted in eight US states legalizing some form of online betting with Delaware being the first in 2012. However, online casino gaming is only allowed in Delaware, New Jersey, Nevada, and Pennsylvania.
When intrastate online gambling regulations became reality, NetEnt started monitoring and evaluating the developments in North America. In July 2014, NetEnt announced that the prerequisites and timing were right to intensify the company’s efforts to enter the upcoming online casino market in the US (as well as Canada).
NetEnt’s entry into the US gambling market
Even though Delaware was the first US state to adopt online gambling regulations in 2012, it was New Jersey that NetEnt had a focus on. In November 2013, New Jersey started to offer properly licensed and regulated online casino and betting sites, but it wasn’t until 2015 that NetEnt’s subsidiary, NetEnt Americas LLC, applied for a Casino Service Industry Enterprise license in New Jersey.
In September 2015, NetEnt obtained a transactional waiver by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (NJDGE), granting the right to supply online casino games in New Jersey while the full license application was being reviewed. It’s thanks to these transactional waivers that NetEnt was able to distribute its awarded online casino games to several operators in New Jersey.
Since the start of their journey in New Jersey in 2015, NetEnt managed to sign customer agreements with a great number of operators including bwin.party, the Borgata brands, Caesars, Golden Nugget, Resorts Casino, PokerStars, Tropicana, and Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City.
In the second quarter of 2015, a cross-patent licensing agreement was signed with IGT for the entire North American market. This kind of contracts were incredibly important for NetEnt’s market entry, also forming the basis for its licensing process.
Approval Casino Service Industry Enterprise license
While NetEnt has been incredibly successful in New Jersey market over the years, I am proud to announce the grant of NetEnt’s first online gaming license in the US issued by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (NJDGE).
“We are very pleased to obtain our first permanent online gaming license in the US. We have been present in New Jersey since 2015 and have supported the regulator throughout the licensing process. The license marks yet another step in our US expansion as we hope to enter additional states if and when they regulate online casino,“ says Erik Nyman, Managing Director, NetEnt Americas LLC.