„We constantly have to go out and buy Bitcoin,“ reports Winning Poker Network.
Winning Poker Network, an online network that supports numerous online poker websites around the world, has reported an increase in demand for Bitcoin payouts.
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In a November 19 Bloomberg report, the CEO behind Winning Poker Network, or WPN, said that up to 95% of poker players currently request to be paid at Bitcoin (BTC).
Although the poker network has admitted several crypto currencies since 2014, WPN CEO Phil Nagy stated that the company needed to make more purchases from BTC than ever due to demand caused by the recent price movement of more than $17,000 and $18,000 in a matter of days.
„We constantly have to go out and buy bitcoins, a lot of them,“ said Nagy. He estimated that even before this recent price increase, the WPN was paying over $100 million in BTCs monthly, approximately 60% of all transactions on the network. Extrapolating to 95% of the payments, Nagy’s reports are currently occurring, and assuming the same volume, that would equal approximately $158 million in Bitcoin each month.
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According to Nagy, the majority of customers who play online poker reside in the United States, which may help explain her preference for cryptomoney as a medium of exchange, given that online gambling is legal in only 11 of the 50 states. The CEO, who resides in Costa Rica, admitted to not verifying whether the players present their earnings for tax purposes.
„It’s an alternative solution to circumvent the law, not really the adoption that Bitcoin should be looking for,“ said Reddit user HighFivePuddy. „It’s not exactly great publicity.
Bitcoin and online poker have a long history together and there are many parallels between the popular card game and cryptomoney trading, even the terminology of „knowing when to HODL“. Past and present professional poker players have been heavily involved with cryptomonies, including Blockfolio co-founder Ed Moncada and Doug Polk, who also runs a channel on cryptomonies on YouTube.
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One of the most important turning points between cryptomonies and gambling came last year, when the WPN set a Guinness World Record for the highest prize in cryptomonies for online poker winnings: USD 1,050,560, or approximately 106 BTC at that time.
Our $5 million Venom was a success in more ways than one. We established the GUINNESS WORLD title RECORDS™ for the biggest prize in crypto currencies for an online poker tournament with a payout of $1,050,560 in Bitcoin.
Even with this level of adoption within the online gaming world, Nagy said the WPN generally converted the Bitcoin it received from players directly into trust money to avoid dealing with volatility. However, that may not be the case for much longer if the demand for Bitcoin payments continues to rise.
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At the time of publication of this article, Bitcoin is priced at USD 17,831, having increased by more than 9% in the last 7 days.