Online payment processor Optimal Payments has been cleared to launch its services for customers in the New Jersey market after the state’s Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) completed a review of the company’s vendor registration.

The DGE’s deemed Optimal suitable to offer its payment and risk management solutions to operators licensed in the state, where the supplier has already agreed to provide services to the likes of Bally Technologies and Caesars Interactive.

Optimal’s president and chief executive Joel Leonoff said he was “excited” to have seen his company named an approved vendor in New Jersey. He added that the company was looking forward to “leveraging [its] vast experience and expertise to help facilitate online payments for [its] partners in New Jersey.”

The approval of Optimal’s vendor status marks the company’s return to the US market after it withdrew its services following the passage of the Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act (UIGEA) in 2006. This was followed by the company agreeing a $19.2m non-prosecution agreement with US authorities in 2009, based on the pre-UIGEA actions of FirePay, acquired by Optimal in 2007.

The company was acquired by Neovia Financial in 2011 in a deal worth up to $50m, with the new entity renamed Optimal Payments. Neovia, formerly Neteller, also struck a non-prosecution deal with the US Department of Justice, paying $136m for its activities before UIGEA was introduced.

Shares in Optimal Payments plc (LSE: OPAY) were trading up 5.54 per cent to 305.00 pence per share as at 09:01 GMT in London this morning.

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