Some of the biggest gambling firms in the world invest a lot of time to go after celebrities and sports stars and pay them huge sums of money to represent them as a brand ambassador.
PokerStars, the biggest online poker website in the world has entered into partnerships with a number of celebrities and athletes such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar Jr, Ronaldo Nazário and Japanese model Yuiko Matsukawa.
New Jersey recently announced that it planned to review and make changes to its policies that govern celebrity poker endorsements.
The New Jersey online poker market has experienced a slump for the last 18 months and the state gaming association is looking for new ways to revive the struggling market. New Jersey regulators recently issued a license for PokerStars and the company is expected to launch operations in the garden state during early 2016.
New Jersey lawmakers want to change laws that govern celebrity poker players as they want gambling companies to stop hiring and paying these brand ambassadors a hiring fee. Instead they propose for the company to pay that money into the celebrity poker player’s account and then allow them to use those funds to play at the poker table. Whatever money the celebrity poker player manages to win at the table, they will be allowed to keep. Should the celebrity poker player decide not to keep their winnings and the gambling establishment becomes the beneficiary, then the gambling company must pay taxes to the state on the revenue it receives.
These celebrity poker players represent the brand at live poker events, online poker tournaments and often do a lot of public relations to promote the brand in their respective countries.
PokerStars recently launched their biggest marketing campaign by using Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar Jr social media presence to promote the PokerStars brand to Latin America.
New Jersey believes that if this policy is rolled out, it could bring in additional revenue to the state but casino establishments are not very open to the idea in the immediate future. Caesars Interactive, one of the top four online gambling establishments in New Jersey stated that the suggestions were interesting but for now they would prefer to pass on the new proposal as they believe that the New Jersey market is way too small for such strong measures and would be more open to the idea once more states legalize online poker and the intra-state player pools got larger.