March 15 - According to the independent online poker monitor, Pokerscout, the
effects of "Black Friday" are still being felt. But most remarkable is the fact
that the Merge Network is now the dominant internet poker network in the US
The is due to the fact that a number of powerful sites such as
Poker Stars and
Full Tilt Poker departed after Black Friday in April last year, leaving a large
void in the US online poker market, which the Merge Network happily stepped in
According to the online poker monitor, the Merge Poker Network has seen an
84% rise in traffic year on year. Therefore, there is little doubt that the
Merge Network dominates the US poker market.
A number of smaller online poker networks are doing equally well, with the
Chico Poker Network reporting a 29% rise, Winning Poker Network up 24% and the
Cake Poker Network up 25%.
Some of the other statistics released by Pokerscout include the fact that
since Black Friday, when US authorities swooped down on giant online poker rooms
and shut them down in the US, there has been an overall decline of 30% in the
market, year on year.
In the last week alone, online poker traffic dipped slightly by 1.1%, which
is the fifth consecutive drop per week.
Some of the groups that have really felt the effect of Black Friday this year
include Full Tilt Poker and the Cereus Network for obvious reasons, but also
GTechG2's International Poker Network, which has slumped by 43%.
US Authorities Have Indicted Bodog Founder Ayre
Since US authorities announced an indictment against the founder of the Bodog
brand, Calvin Ayre and several other Canadians, the site has lost considerable
Bodog, according to Pokerscout, lost another 9% last week, and has dropped a
total of 13% since the defunct but symbolic Bodog.com domain was seized by the
However, Bodog doesn't seem to be too worried about these numbers, because
the overall effect of Black Friday has only been positive for the group, which
remains up 39% year on year.
Poker Stars Dominates World Market
While Poker Stars may have lost its footing in the US online
poker market due to the actions of the Department of Justice in April last year,
the group still continues to remain the dominant force in the global online
poker market. Globally, Poker Stars reported a 17% increase.
Party Poker, part of the bwin.party digital entertainment group,
saw an 13% increase, while the iPoker Network climbed 8%.
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