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Credit card companies to blame for NJ online gambling market slow growth

November 4, 2014

The 2014 Mobile and Tablet Gambling Summit (MTGS) kicked off last week’s Monday, October 27th, at Bally’s in Atlantic City, is one of the most relevant events for the gambling and betting industry in the United States, given the idiosyncrasy with the online gambling market, federally speaking. The event is being one of the best opportunities for both, land-based casinos and online gambling operators, to get inside of the iGaming industry. During the celebration of 2014’s edition, the industry has had a chance to discuss important matters such as the increasing online gambling market. However, the event brought us some politic remarks from significant public figures such as Ray Lesniak, New Jersey’s State Senator (D), and Alex Bumazhny, a gaming analyst at Fitch Ratings.

Ray Lesniak, one of NJ’s most crucial online gambling backers, could not resist this great opportunity to speak his mind. He made just a few comments on online gambling state of affairs, blaming credit cards companies as well as politicians such as NJ’s Governor Chris Christie. Christie has been hardly criticized for his impractical prediction for the gambling market figures, proving once again the lack of knowledge he holds on this matter. Ray Lesniak (who practically forced NJ to approve State’s directive that allows land-based casinos to offer sports wagering services) continues pushing the Garden State government to keep NJ’s gambling industry lawful state. However, credit card companies, as wells as public figures, are the ones to blame for NJ online gambling slow growth: “Do not expect stellar results until the major credit card companies come on board. Sheldon Adelson, a longtime contributor to the Republican Party, but also an outspoken opponent to online gambling, is being courted by many possible suitors for the GOP presidential ticket who will want to be in the billionaire’s good graces come campaign time, and Christie is no exception to that pool.”

Alex Bumazhny, another NJ’s online gambling supporter, has also made a point. Fitch Ratings’ gambling analyst believes that credit card companies are just afraid from possible federal retaliations, as it has happened with several other states that are still fighting against the feds to keep online gambling operational. Alex Bumazhny agrees with Ray Lesniak on that but that credit card companies should not fear any federal reprisals: “I think it is a legacy thought… I think it is just a matter of educating the payment processers that it is indeed legal; they simply need to understand better the current climate of i-Gaming. Right from the beginning, we did not think that the original projections made sense. We were among the more conservative analysts out there. We came out with a $200 to $300 million projection for the first year.”


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