Austria launches online poker

In a testament to the growing acceptance and popularity of online gaming, Austria has become the world’s second nation to launch a government-owned poker site.

Developed in co-operation with the Sweden’s Svenska Spel, and jointly operated by Casinos Austria and Austrian Lotteries, began taking registrations from Austrian citizens last week. The site follows in the footsteps of its Swedish predecessor and will also use Boss Media’s technology platform.

However, unlike its Swedish counterpart, will be able to offer freeroll competitions and announced that USD 72,477 would be given away in freerolls for February to celebrate the launch.

The site is also linking with Casinos Austria’s conventional offline business in running satellites for the Casinos Austria Poker Tour (CAPT), which consists of six live tournaments running from February 24 to October 12 with a total prize pool of more that seven million dollars.

As a part of a policy on responsible gaming, has a weekly deposit limit of USD 1,159 for all citizens and offers no further bonuses aside from freerolls. It has set its rake at 2.5 percent, following Sweden’s example, and also features a range of guides and videos to help newcomers familiarize themselves with the service covering everything from initial download and deposit to how to play the game.

“We are very proud that Austria has launched its poker site using Boss Media’s software and there is a great sense of expectation,” said Michael Hallen, CEO for Sweden’s Boss Media.

“We have been given a big responsibility and everyone at Boss Media has been working hard alongside our colleagues at and to make this launch successful, as successful as the launch of two years ago.“