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New Jersey operators may not have to compete with a PokerStars marketing blitz—at least not until the launch phase begins.
PokerStars has opened a sponsored thread on the Two Plus Two poker forums. In response to players’ questions in the PokerStars New Jersey Official thread, “PokerStars Dylan” hints that the operator will not be trying to buy its market share with lavish cash giveaways.
When asked about incentives and bonuses for new account sign-ups, the rep referred only to the “currently announced” promotions which include a $25,000 freeroll and the opportunity for players with existing PokerStars accounts to receive 1.6 StarsCoins for each of their outstanding Frequent Player Points (FPP) and to continue with a VIP status determined by their previous playing history.
However, additional promotions will be announced at the time of the launch, according to the rep.
The exchange rate of 1.6 StarsCoin per FPP is better than that offered to players on PokerStars.com when the new VIP system was introduced at the beginning of this year.
The rep explained that this was because dot-com players were given two months notice of the changes and were encouraged to exchange their FPPs for cash, tournament entries or products while they still had access to the higher conversion rates.
One significant difference between the VIP scheme available on the New Jersey site will be a lower player points requirement for the higher VIP levels. The highest level Supernova which is awarded on the basis of points earned during the year, rather than monthly, will require only half as much play as on the dot-com site.
The difference is explained as being due to New Jersey “being a closed liquidity market.” Percentage rakeback equivalents look almost the same as for the dot-com site.
At launch there will be no VIP tournaments, but there are plans to run a “number of value/seat-added VIP Bash Satellites to our marquee events throughout the year,” according to the rep.
To take advantage of the assets that accompany their old accounts, players must create their New Jersey account using a special “Quick Account Creation” process. In addition, all players who sign-up for an account within the first week after the launch will receive a ticket to a “We are in New Jersey” $25,000 freeroll to be held on March 27.
The evidence may be tentative, but it appears that PokerStars is going to rely on its brand, software and game offer to attract customers rather than producing big money promotions to try to poach existing customers from the other licensed New Jersey operators.
If this is the case, the other operators will be relieved that a price war is not about to start. On the other hand, PokerStars can switch its strategy rapidly if the softly, softly approach does not work.
PokerStars is due to launch in New Jersey’s regulated market on March 21.
Players who have outstanding balances on their old PokerStars accounts can reclaim them by contacting PokerStars Support directly. Notably, the repayment of previous player balances was one of the conditions set by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE ) for issuing Amaya with a license for PokerStars to operate.
This article is syndicated by the leading poker industry news authority, Poker Industry PRO.