Gerry Gionet, founder of GEObet Network, has confirmed that several Native American tribes have asked to join the organisation, which provides iGaming solutions to land-based casino operators.
Gionet held private discussions with tribes from Northern California and Nevada last month. Joining GEObet would allow the tribes ultimately to launch online operations.
While some tribes have previously used free-play iGaming sites as an entry point into the market, GEObet offers the opportunity to go live with real-money online poker, casino and sportsbook services.
“The use of the airwaves and the practice of gambling on games and contest is ingrained in our ancient tribal societies,” Gionet said.
“This is a part of who we are and this has survived to this day. Many Indians have not learned or realise the importance of their own history and how this history can play a part in today’s tribal renaissance.”
Following the meetings at an invitation-only event in Reno, Gionet reasserted his belief that “organic growth in online gaming through hard work and entrepreneurial spirit of the tribal people can bring wide success”.
A number of tribes have already signed up to GEObet’s iGaming offering, with Canada-based Northern Bear Casino the first to go live last November.
Chief William Bills from the Winnemucca Indian Colony of Nevada added, “The tribes do not want to beg a seat at the table.
“We must have a table of discussion where the states and federal government can come and work with us and where they can understand and endorse our growth in economic development, ecommerce and iGaming.
“The big land-based consortiums are afraid that an organised online push by tribes in all the states in America would create one of the most powerful online casino business groups in the world.”
Bernard Shepherd, chief executive officer of Northern Bear Casino, said, “If the tribes do not exercise their rights to sovereignty we will be passed by. Those rights that can make us ground-breakers in online gaming if not exercised in a timely manner will be devalued simply because the business will move forward without us.
“It took our little tribal casino to open the doors for tribes across Canada, and when these casinos move online they will double the revenues after time and it will again become the smartest decision we have made since opening the land based casinos.”