Iowa Tribe of Oklahoma Granted Gaming License by Isle of Man
An Iowa Indian Tribe has taken a huge step towards offering legal real money online poker. The Iowa Tribe of Oklahoma recently revealed that the Isle of Man has granted them an online poker license. They have become the first Native American Tribe to receive an iPoker license
PokerTribe.com to Launch Sometime This Fall
The Iowa Tribe issued a press release earlier this month revealing that they have secured their license with the Isle of Man. According to the release, the Tribe traveled to the Isle of Man in August 2016 to meet with officials regarding the license. They then came back and incorporated Ioway Internet Gaming Enterprise Limited within the Isle of Man in order to apply for the license.
The Iowa Tribe then filed their application back in February with the initial approval received on June 13. However, there were four conditions that the tribe had to meet before the final license was granted. They’ve met those conditions and have now officially received their license.
Now the Tribe looks forward to launching PokerTribe.com. In the presser, they set a general date of Fall 2017 as the launch date. The Tribe is currently working on setting up partnerships and will soon announce the hiring of a general manager that they said has “extensive experience in international online gaming” to head the launch.
How Did the Iowa Tribe Get Around the UIGEA?
Some of you may be asking how the Iowa Tribe is able to offer online poker due to the provisions of the UIGEA and the fact that Oklahoma has not regulated online poker. The Iowa Tribe is going a different route and actually looking to offer online poker internationally rather than to US players.
The fight to offer international online poker by the Tribe dates back to 2015 when they announced their initial plans to launch PokerTribe.com. The Oklahoma Gambling Compliance Unit deemed that it was illegal but the Tribe took the matter to arbitration.
In November 2015, the arbitrator ruled that the Tribe could indeed offer online poker internationally in countries where online poker is legal. This arbitration award was then certified by a federal district court in Oklahoma City in April 2016.
Poker Just the First Step
Looking at their website, it appears that the Iowa Tribe has aspirations beyond online poker. According to their site, other gambling games are coming in the future. They are planning to offer online slots, bingo, pulltabs along with online casino games like BlackJack and Baccarat.
It will be interesting to see whether the site can compete in the international market considering the sheer volume of online gambling sites presently available. However, PokerTribe.com does set an interesting precedent for other Native American Tribes.
Tribes in other states could follow suit and explore international online poker and casino opportunities, especially if PokerTribe proves to be profitable. Tribes in other states could decide to put off waiting for state legislators to regulate locally and decide to offer their services internationally. Since the Iowa Tribe has been certified to do so, there’s no reason to assume that other tribes will be unable to do so.