PokerStars Target Indian Smartphone Market

Rafi Ashkenazi, Amaya's CEO told reporters after an annual meeting in Montreal last Wednesday that the company intended to make waves in the Indian market, lured by the country's 1.2 billion mobile users.

Ashkenazi said "We want to be there in time and we want to make sure that we are, as usual, the market leader when it comes to poker." By all accounts, Amaya will be aiming to pick up at least half of the Indian market which they believe could eventually be worth $150m per annum.

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Above: Amaya CEO Rafi Ashkenazi is determined for PokerStars to make their mark in the Indian smartphone gaming market

Amaya will be hoping that revenues generated from new business in India could help offset some of the losses they will incur if, as planned, they exit the Australian market in order to comply with upcoming legal changes outlawing, among other things, online poker.

Bloomberg.com notes that "While India too has a lack of legal clarity, some states have given licenses to online poker companies on classifying their products as 'games of skill'".  It further states that KPMG estimates that India's online gaming industry will more than double to $1bn by 20121, adding 190 million gamers, most of whom will be using mobile devices.

At the annual meeting itself shareholders agreed to rename the company The Stars Group Inc. as had been proposed last month. The have also agreed to move the company headquarters from Montreal to Ontario.

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