AOL is ready to roll the dice on online gambling.
A few months after YAHOO UK & Ireland entered the real money online poker market, AOL UK has announced that it will follow suit, offering real-money sports betting in conjunction with UK Internet bookmaker JAXX, a subsidiary of FLUXX.
The service is scheduled to begin later this month. The launch will focus on the UK, with plans to extend the offering to other European countries quickly, according to the press release. AOL will not accept bets from the U.S.
"We are looking at a range of partnerships and initiatives to drive our business forward in Europe," said Michael Steckler, vice president of interactive marketing for AOL Europe. "Linking up with FLUXX fits that strategy perfectly. Their wealth of ideas and experience in the betting business will bring additional energy and diversity to our offering both here in the UK and across other European countries."
AOL is not completely new to online betting, having partnered with JAXX since 2003 to run an online lottery service in Germany. However, entering the lucrative European sports betting market is a much larger and more complex venture.
"The British market is one of the largest and most attractive in the world, with a betting volume of around EUR 70 billion," said Rainer Jacken, management board spokesman of FLUXX. "Yet the online market is still notably underdeveloped. Together with AOL, we have now created a highly competitive service that will help us to tap into this growth."