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Online Poker Drops Sharply in Italy

Revenues for online poker in Italy have dropped drastically during the first quarter of the year, according to figures published by regulatory authority AAMS.

The figures showed that online cash poker in the southern European country fell by 34.6 per cent, resulting in a total revenue of €43.1 million in the first three months of the year.  Online tournament poker, on the other hand, had a total revenue of €28.7 million, a 36.4 per cent drop from the same period last year.

In a statement released with the figures, AAMS stated the reasons for the sharp drop were a “decline in popularity of online poker in Europe” as well as “a general decline of spending on games in Italy”. The drops also offset the strong 84.7 per cent increase in online casino revenues in Italy over the first quarter.

As was expected, PokerStars remained the major player in Italian online poker throughout the first quarter, with the company occupying more than half of the poker market in the country. The company also had roughly one third of the cash game market in Italy during that time.

While PokerStars dominates the Italian market, other online poker companies are still surviving in the market despite the first quarter drop. The online company iPoker still has a solid chunk of Italy’s online market, with its .it domain having a seven-day average of 550 players, according to Pokerscout.

Ongame’s Italian domain is not too far behind, with a seven-day average of 495 players, good enough for it to be the world’s 20th most popular online poker site. PeoplesNetwork’s .it domain had an average of 485 players over the same period while International averaged 445 players on its online Italian domain.

Other online games in Italy, including bingo and sports betting, also decreased sharply during the first quarter of 2013.

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