Research institution and consultancy Academicon and market research company PokerScout have claimed in a new study that if California opts to legalize online poker, the US state could generate revenue of up to $263 million (€192 million) in the first year.
The study said that the US state can expect to generate between $217 million and $263 million in its first year of operations if it goes ahead with a regulated service.
The research claimed that the market could generate revenue of up to $384 million in year 10 of operations.
Researchers analyzed data on 4.6 million real-money online poker players in both 2009 and 2010, a period in which unregulated poker in the US was near its peak.
The study found that 178,300 online poker players in California generated an average of $867 per year in revenue for internet poker operators, thus creating a $155 million market.
Researchers also noted that Californian players accounted for 16% of US revenue and 4% of worldwide online poker revenue.
Professor Kahlil Philander, one of the authors of the study, said regulated online poker is expected to grow ‘well beyond’ its previous peak.
However, fellow author Dr. Ingo Fiedler warned that expectations could be impacted by the way in which the market is regulated.
The report said if the state were to restrict operations to a California-only player pool, estimations would be reduced to $217 million in the first year of operations to $263 million in year 10.
“The size of the market depends strongly on the decision to either limit the player pool to in-state residents or participate in a federal or international network of players,” Fiedler said.