888 Holdings became the first online gaming company to obtain a US license in March 2013. The company also has been partnering with licensed online gaming operators to establish a foothold in the legal U.S. poker market. Within Nevada, for instance, 888 has separately partnered with both Caesars Interactive Entertainment and Treasure Island, both holders of gaming licenses.
888 Holdings owns 888Poker, one of the largest online poker sites in the world (currently fifth in overall traffic). 888 Holdings recently partnered with a U.S. investment firm, Avenue Capital Group, to form a Delaware corporation and establish the All American Poker Network. (AAPN). Delaware already has passed legislation to allow for online poker, so incorporating in that state theoretically puts 888 in prime position to establish an online poker site or partnership there. According to some reports, AAPN’s first official online poker room will be Treasure Island, but 888 could launch its own site shortly thereafter, if not before. The AAPN’s stable of sites is expected to expand rapidly along with state-level or national legalizations for online gaming.
Interactive Gaming Partners
While Treasure Island is said to be the first AAPN poker site, that doesn’t mean Treasure Island will be the first 888-related site to hit the market. There are strong indications that Caesars Interactive Entertainment’s WSOP.com online poker site, which will not be part of the AAPN, will be the first U.S. legal, 888-based online poker site to launch real-money operations within the U.S. Caesars is also pushing forward with online poker licenses in New Jersey, which would give 888 a foothold in that market, as well.
Along with those two partnerships, 888 also has a deal with Nevada-based WMS Gaming to bring online gaming to land-based casinos.