Georgia has allowed casino gambling in the country.
In Tbilisi alone (Georgia’s capital), there are at the least 15 casinos operating. While some of these casinos are small in size with a few slot machines set up in bars and restaurants, the rest are put up more elaborately with table games and hundreds of slot machines.
Georgia is one of the countries that attained independence from the former Soviet Union. With Sakartvelo as its other name, Georgia is located between Turkey and Russia on the black Sea coast. On the other side, it is bordered by Azerbaijan and Armenia. Georgia has always been a key part of the Soviet oil industry, sustaining military and economic ties with its neighbor Ukraine, most especially via an oil pipeline that runs through both countries.
Thanks to the flourishing Georgian oil business, Tbilisi (or Tiflis), is always filled with foreign businessmen. In fact, Tbilisi is tagged as a resort city considering its proximity to the Black Sea. Aside from foreign dignitaries, Tbilisi is frequented by out-of-towners as well. This has led to the growth of the local casino industry.
In line with the physical casino, online casino gambling is developing briskly. Posters of online casino have been sprouting all over Tbilisi’s streets and the numbers have tripled recently. Online casino operators report massive increase in players because not all poker players have the time and opportunity to physically visit actual casino. Online casinos provide affordable casino games which people can play in the comfort of their homes. The only requirement to be able to play online casino is a computer and internet connectivity. A lot of Georgian locals favor online casino to going to actual casinos.
Online casino came to the gambling world’s attention when Chris Moneymaker won the 2003 World Series of Poker. At that time, he was representing Pokerstars.com, an online casino site.
Setting up an internet-based casino is way simpler that securing an international license. The Georgian government charges 5 million for a license to operate a casino. When this is paid, a businessman can already operate a real casino, something that is compulsory before operating an online casino version.
Oto Shalikashvili, CMO of Adjarabet, one of the most popular casino operators in Georgia, said, “Online games are a very fast growing market. These games are becoming very popular in Georgia. We have 30,000 likes on Facebook. Out of this number we have 95 percent daily involvement. That means that the majority of the people who like us on Facebook are our clients. We have over hundreds of thousands of active players who play at least once a month.” He adds, “The development of social networks has supported the popularity of online games. People like to compete with each other. Georgians are very excitable and erudite. So they play well-crafted, intellectual games. Poker is a game of skill and not a game of luck. Therefore it is the most popular online game in Georgia.”