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WV Online Poker Could Launch ‘Later This Year,’ According To Lottery Director

Written By Katarina Vojvodic on February 13, 2024
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Being one of the six US online casino states, West Virginia is an amusing gambling market offering its players several betting options.

To offer online poker enthusiasts the possibility to compete against players in other legal states, West Virginia joined the Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement (MSIGA) as the fifth state in the fall of 2023. The MSIGA lets online casino member states (Delaware, Michigan, Nevada, and New Jersey) share traffic, but West Virginians must wait for operators to launch a poker component within their state.

According to an article by Corey Sharp at PlayWV, the West Virginia Lottery’s Executive Director, John Myers, said online poker could launch later in the year.

The Lottery controls all online gambling in West Virginia in partnership with its five retail casinos. West Virginia legalized online poker simultaneously as online casinos in 2019, but no operators chose to offer the activity.

West Virginia Lottery expected online poker to go live in Q1 2024

When the WV Lottery joined MSIGA in November, it expected the agreement would attract at least one operator to the state within a few months. As it seems, it may take longer than anticipated.

According to PlayWV, Myers expected operators to come forward during the first quarter of 2024. He told PlayWV: “At this time, from what I understand, they’ve had other priorities and just haven’t gotten it launched yet.”

For a market to offer online poker, it needs an operator to launch a poker platform first. After talking to multiple providers, Myers said: “Basically, all I can get from them is [to launch] later this year.”

The process for a poker operator to launch could require several months. The operator would first have to submit its proposal and get it accepted by the state regulator. Finally, it would have to have its online poker software tested to receive approval to launch its product.

Therefore, Myers believes online poker could go live in the state by the end of 2024.

Online poker would be a great addition to a rich WV gambling selection

Although having a population of only 1.7 million, the Mountain State is a prosperous gambling state offering various betting options for all kinds of players. The available gambling verticals include:

The state also offers daily fantasy sports.

In January, WV sportsbooks made over $46 million in total bets, resulting in a $6 million revenue. However, the WV sports betting market has not grown at the rate of online casinos that generate monthly revenue of up to $16 million.

Myers said it is mainly because the state doesn’t have a pro sports team.

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Katarina Vojvodic

Katarina Vojvodic is a lead writer for PlayUSA who lives in Toronto. Vojvodic provides coverage of the US gambling industry with a focus on US online casinos. Previously, she covered Ontario’s online gambling industry for PlayCanada.com. Vojvodic holds a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Belgrade. Outside working hours, she can be found near the water with her husband and their two kids.

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