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Intertops Stops Accepting New Australian Customers

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Award-winning sportsbook, casino, and poker organization Intertops has announced that it will no longer allow Australian residents to create new accounts as of Dec. 20, 2017. Existing Aussie customers will be able to continue utilizing the company's products. It's still possible for new players to play in the same games by signing up with Intertops' sister site, Juicy Stakes. There will be no interruption in online gambling or poker services for anyone who already has an Intertops account. Intertops is the flagship site of the Horizon Poker Network.

Background

AUS Flag Map

In August 2017, the Interactive Gambling Amendment Bill 2016 was passed into law, and it effectively prohibited online poker organizations from serving Australia. Even before this legislation was finalized, 888poker took the pre-emptive step of exiting the market. After the bill was passed, PartyPoker and PokerStars followed suit.

Where some companies sensed danger and possible legal liability, others spotted opportunity. For Ignition Poker, Australia represented a fine addition to its customer base, which had been exclusively American up to that point, and so it opened its doors to people from the Land Down Under. It seemed as though Intertops was following a similar strategy because it decided to run promotions that targeted Australia's citizens, like tournament series at AUS-friendly times and Aussie Millions online satellites. However, Intertops is now putting the brakes on its Australian endeavours as revealed by this recent addition to its terms and conditions:

1.2.5. No sign-ups initiated from Australia, France and from the United Kingdom will be accepted in the Sportsbook, Casino or Poker Room.

Reasons for Intertops' Decision

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While the firm hasn't revealed exactly why it's leaving Australia, we can make a few well-informed hypotheses. The Australia-focused MTT series that it ran for several months tended to overlay quite considerably, forcing the site to shell out thousands of dollars. It's likely that management made a cost-benefit analysis and concluded that it was time to stop handing out free cash. Perhaps they expected more business from Aussies than they actually garnered. From Professional Rakeback's point of view, quite a few of our Australian clients created accounts at Tops, but in actuality, few deposited and played, for reasons unknown.

Intertops will continue to collect rake from existing Australian customers, who have been grandfathered in, and will hopefully be able to recoup this marketing spend with a healthy profit besides. This is especially true if the company can convert poker users to the more lucrative sports and casino verticals. And we all know that Australia is the country with the most per capita gambling in the world, and it's not even close! But let us back track for a second in case you missed it... existing Australian players can continue to play at Intertops! Your accounts are not closed, nor are they likely to be based on past history.

Intertops followed a similar strategy in the United States after Black Friday when it closed to new American signups yet allowed existing players to continue to log into the platform. In February 2015, the organization reversed this decision when it opened its doors again to U.S. players. Management will probably keep an eye on the Australian legal and financial scene to determine if and when to revise its policy and begin allowing Australians to sign up for new accounts.

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What to Do Now

For those of you who created accounts and have yet to deposit, you still can since your accounts are grandfathered in! However, if you dilly-dallied and didnt create an account, yet you had wanted to join Intertops from Australia, this is now no longer possible. Fortunately, however, you can still play poker at any number of other online sites. There's nothing, in new laws or old, making it illegal for you, a private Australian citizen, to enjoy your favourite card games over the internet. The entire focus of Australia's anti-online gambling laws is on prosecuting those who run the games rather than ordinary players. For complete details on the available Australian online poker rooms as well as the welcome bonuses that they provide, check out our guide to legal online poker sites in Australia.