At least one online gambling company believes that regulation will come into the U.S. sooner than later. UK-based UC Group, an online payment processor, is establishing a U.S. subsidiary to allow licensed companies to serve the American market once the marketplace is regulated.

That subsidary, SecureTrading Inc., will include three former MasterCard executives in leadership positions.

The GPWA has the press release:

WILSON, Connecticut -- (PRESS RELEASE) -- Anticipating the passage of federal legislation to regulate online gambling, U.K.-based UC Group Ltd., an advocate for regulating Internet gambling in the U.S. and a leading provider of online payment processing services announced today the launch of its U.S. subsidiary, SecureTrading Inc., to allow licensed companies to serve the U.S. market once the marketplace is regulated. The company is poised to provide a complete suite of services that ensure safe financial transactions and required consumer protections. Leading SecureTrading Inc.'s U.S. operations are three former senior executives from MasterCard Inc. (NYSE:MA): Chris Thom, Ted Friedman and T.J. Sharkey who joined as Chairman, Chief Operating Officer and Head of Customer Sales and Support, respectively.

"Momentum for regulating Internet gambling in the U.S. has been building for some time," said Chris Thom. "As Congress prepares to take the final step, SecureTrading Inc.'s turnkey system is primed to enable our customers to go live the moment Internet gambling is regulated."

SecureTrading Inc.'s services will enable licensed gambling operators quickly and efficiently to be in full compliance with Internet gambling regulation. Offerings include player registration, verification and validation to ensure that the player is not underage and is in a location where online gambling is legal. The company also provides financial payments processing, anti-money laundering and fraud tools, tax computation and collection, payment and reporting; and responsible gambling tools that will allow players to self-exclude from online gambling activity or elect online to seek help in real-time for problem gambling.

"Individually and collectively Chris, Ted and T.J. have extensive experience in the Card and Banking industry for providing Internet payment services across multiple market sectors," said Kobus Paulsen, Chairman of UC Group Ltd. "They bring substantial value to SecureTrading Inc. and our customer base as we prepare for the passage and implementation of online gambling regulation in the U.S."

Prior to joining SecureTrading Inc. as Chairman, Chris Thom was Chief Risk Officer at MasterCard, where he spent 11 years covering responsibilities ranging from franchise management, security and risk management, to product development. Prior to joining MasterCard, Thom served as a senior executive at HSBC, one of the world's largest banks.

Ted Friedman, Chief Operating Officer at SecureTrading Inc., previously worked at MasterCard New York and Europay International in Belgium. At MasterCard, Friedman served as the Global Head of Credit Products and Senior Vice President Change Management. At Europay, he was the Head of Corporate Strategy and a member of the Management Committee.

Before joining SecureTrading Inc. as Head of Customer Sales and Support, T.J. Sharkey spent 17 years at MasterCard, most recently as the Group Head of Global Merchants and Acquirers. Sharkey's previous responsibilities at MasterCard included strategy, sales, business development, corporate and regional finance and internal audit. Sharkey also led the merchant sales strategy for MasterCard's PayPass implementation. Prior to joining MasterCard, Sharkey spent three years within KPMG's financial services audit practice.

The Internet Gambling Regulation, Consumer Protection and Enforcement Act of 2009 (H.R. 2267), introduced by Chairman Barney Frank (D-MA) in May 2009, would establish a framework to permit licensed gambling operators to accept wagers from individuals in the U.S. The legislation, which has attracted broad support, would require an array of consumer protections. Each state would also be able to determine whether to allow Internet gambling activity for people accessing the Internet within the state and if so to apply other restrictions on the activity.