PokerStars may well be enemy number one for the professional grinder, but they have been shown some loving from the judges at the 10th Annual eGaming Review (EGR) Awards, at The Roundhouse, London.
The world’s largest online poker room picked up the awards for Poker Operator of the Year, and Mobile Poker Operator of the Year, easing the pain felt by the vitriolic behavior from their once loyal troops following a series of cost-cutting exercises that has hit them in the pocket.
We’re very proud to be acknowledged by eGR and the expert judging panel for our success as the leading online poker operator online and on mobile. Competition in our industry is always fierce and we’re proud to be recognized by our peers for delivering an outstanding product and service to millions of players,” commented Eric Hollreiser, Head of Corporate Communications for the Rational Group.
PokerStars recently came under attack from a group of professional poker players after a series of changes to the rake system, currency conversion, and VIP program made it more difficult for them to earn a living on the site.
Talal Shakerchi, founder of Meditor Capital and a recreational poker player, even went as far as to call PokerStars ‘Greedstars’ during an interview with CalvinAyre when he spoke about his concern over the Red Spade’s recent changes.
William Hill Steal the Show
The star of the night was without doubt William Hill.
The UK bookmaker picked up four awards: Operator of the Year, Marketing Campaign of the Year, Slots Operator of the Year, and Casino Operator of the Year. They were also recognized for their tremendous work in the ‘in-play ‘market.
William Hill recently saw Q3 group net revenue rise 23%, online operating profit rise 126%, and online gaming net revenue rise 23%, in another strong showing for the bookie.
The Best of the Rest
Sky also had a great night with three awards heading their way for Affiliate Program of the Year, Mobile Operator of the Year, and Mobile Sports Product of the Year. Sky have recently signed the Betting Emporium’s Neil Channing to act as an ambassador for the poker side of the operation.
Playtika, Oddschecker, and Bet365 also won two awards apiece. The rising Swedish star Unibet was recognized for its good work in the sports betting field, but couldn’t knock Bet365 off that particular perch.
On the individual front, Paddy Power CEO Patrick Kennedy was given EGR’s Outstanding Contribution Award. The Irishman will step down from his role at the end of the financial year.
Awards in Full
Operator of the year: William Hill
Mobile operator: Sky Betting & Gaming
Affiliate programme: Sky Betting & Gaming
Customer services operator: Betsson Group
Social bingo product: Playtika
Socially responsible operator: Paf
Mobile casino product: LeoVegas.com
Binary betting operator: 24option
Social casino product: High 5 Games
Gaming affiliate: Kax Media – Gambling.com
Poker operator: PokerStars
Mobile bingo product: mFortune Casino
Spread betting product: Sporting Index
In-play sports operator: bet365
Bingo operator: tombola
Rising star: Colossus Bets
Sports affiliate: Oddschecker
Marketing campaign: William Hill
Slots operator: William Hill
Affiliate of the year: Oddschecker
Mobile poker product: PokerStars
Social operator: Playtika
Mobile sports product: Sky Bet
Casino operator: William Hill
Sports betting operator: bet365
Outstanding contribution: Patrick Kennedy, Paddy Power