PokerStars Get License To Operate In France

Written by Thomas | Sunday, July 18th, 2010

PokerStars is missed out on the first round of licenses distributed by France but managed to make the cut in subsequent rounds. With their new license in hand, they are now able to legally provide gambling services to the French population.

The ARJEL, France’s organization in charge of distributing licenses to online gambling operators and regulating the industry, announced that PokerStars was assigned License Number 0006-PO-2010-06-25 and can now operate legally within their country. This gives the online poker giant free reign, within the restrictions of the law of course, to provide online gambling games, including poker to French citizens. The site’s French domain, began operations yesterday.

PokerStars is the largest online poker room in the world, so it’s no surprise that their application for licensing was accepted. However, it’s pretty interesting to note that the online poker giant didn’t initially make a mad push to become licensed in France. They are one of the few sites that is able to pick and choose what moves they make without a great sense of urgency, because they are so large and popular.

Once PokerStars determined that they were okay with France’s licensing application process, they made their bid for inclusion on May 19th and were accepted about two months later. However, inclusion isn’t the end of the matter. PokerStars must adhere to the strict regulations of the ARJEL and there are some notable ones especially as it concerns online poker.

All players at are able to participate in free online poker games but are unable to play in cash games. This restriction will stay in place until France publishes their online poker regulations. Since that has yet to happen, players have to settle for free games.

PokerStars, for their part, is extremely exciting. ‘ aims to be one of the leading online poker operators from the day the French market opens,’ PokerStars French Country Manager Alexandre Balkany stated during the announcement. ‘We plan on offering players the best tournaments, promotions, and opportunities to win seats at PokerStars’ world renowned international tournaments.’

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