PokerStars to exit Australia by mid-September

15 August 2017

PokerStars has confirmed that it will withdraw from the Australian market by the middle of September after the country’s Senate passed a bill that will introduce sweeping changes to national gambling regulations.

The bill includes legislation that bans all remote operators from offering online poker and in-play sports betting services to punters in Australia, as well as new restrictions requiring such companies to hold a licence under State of Territory laws in order to offer internet gambling services in the country.

A number of major operators have hit out at the bill, with several exiting the market in response, including 888 and 32Red.

PokerStars, owned by the recently rebranded The Stars Group, has now become the latest major name to announce its withdrawal from Australia, confirming to customers in an email that it will cease operations in the country within a matter of weeks.

The operator did not name the exact date that it will no longer offer services to punters in Australia, but did state it will leave the market “most likely around mid-September”.

In the email, PokerStars added: “We’ve been aware of this day coming.

“We’re proud to have seen the Australian poker community grow so strong over the last decade.

“We do respect the Australian Government’s decision in taking steps to protect consumers and hope that in time we’ll be able to serve real-money poker to you again.”

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