The poker vertical is littered with companies that have gone through boom-and-bust cycles, but PokerStars has consistently remained at the forefront of the industry. This sees it once again take home the poker operator of the year prize.
When a company continues to perform so impressively it makes the decision particularly easy. PokerStars has constantly reinvented itself, successfully adapting to every challenge it faces.
At a time when other operators are cautious about moving into newly-regulated territories, PokerStars has the means to secure first-mover advantage in almost every territory.
In the regulated New Jersey market, where it was unable to join the first wave of licensees, it is pulling ahead of Caesars Interactive as the market's third-largest licensee. It holds a 75 per cent sit'n go market share, more than 10 times that of any competitor, and a 74 per cent tournament market share.
The company has also made a conscious effort to expand its player base with simplified products and promotions for recreational players, and now has 113 million registered players. Efforts to tap into the eSports player base even threatens to broaden the appeal of poker beyond the core gambling demographic.
In this category, no one else comes close.
HIGHLY COMMENDED: GVC HOLDINGS (PARTYPOKER)
GIA 2018 Winners:
Sports betting operator of the year - Sky Betting & Gaming
Bingo operator of the year - Stride Gaming
Casino operator of the year - PokerStars Casino
Social casino operator of the year - Aristocrat Leisure
Lottery operator of the year - La Française des Jeux
One to watch – operator award - VideoSlots
Operator innovation award - The Stars Group - Stars Rewards
eSports operator of the year - Pinnacle
Marketing campaign of the year - LeoVegas - Hitta.se
Social casino supplier of the year - Scientific Games
Sports betting supplier of the year - SBTech
Poker supplier of the year - Playtech
Bingo supplier of the year - Playtech
Marketing solutions provider of the year - Beehive
Casino supplier of the year - NetEnt
Game of the year - Playtech - Age of the Gods
Supplier innovation award - Scientific Games OneVoice
Lottery supplier of the year - Scientific Games
One to watch – supplier award - Red Tiger Gaming
eSports supplier of the year - Betgenius
Responsible gambling operator of the year - NO ONE