KGC Upholds FTP’s Authorization

August 1, 2011 - 7:04 PM EDT

The Kahnawake Gaming Commission announced Friday that it has agreed to renew Full Tilt Poker’s Secondary Client Provider Authorization.

The KGC offers Secondary CPAs to sites that already hold “a valid license to operate interactive gaming issued by a comparable jurisdiction.”1 Holders of Secondary CPAs have many of the same rights as those directly licensed by the KGC, including the ability to use Mohawk Internet Technology’s servers, which can provide necessary bandwidth to service North American customers. Full Tilt has held such an authorization since July 2010.

On June 29th, immediately after the Alderney Gambling Control Commission suspended Full Tilt’s licenses and shut down its operations, FTP began moving data from its backup servers to the MIT servers, as its executives considered restarting operations under their KGC secondary authorization. However, Full Tilt did not restart. Though it was not clear whether FTP executives or the KGC had prevented this, on June 30th the commission did release a statement explaining that they had not decided whether FTP’s secondary authorization would be continued.

This latest statement says that the Kahnawake Gaming Commission has chosen to renew Full Tilt’s secondary authorization for two more years, in spite of the fact that its primary licenses have been suspended. This decision is quite surprising considering the KGC’s own regulations:

In the event the license from the primary jurisdiction is suspended, revoked or allowed to lapse, the holder of a Secondary Client Provider Authorization must, within thirty (30) days, apply for a Client Provider Authorization under these Regulations, failing which the Commission may suspend or revoke the Secondary Client Provider Authorization.

In this case, the primary jurisdiction, Alderney, has suspended the license of the holder of a Secondary Client Provider Authorization, Full Tilt. However, it appears that Full Tilt has not applied for a Client Provider Authorization (a full permit from the KGC) within thirty days as required, and the commission has still allowed FTP to keep its secondary license.

In Friday’s announcement, the KGC justified its decision by arguing that a suspended license is still valid:

To maintain a Secondary CPA, a licensee must maintain a valid licence to operate interactive gaming that has been issued by a comparable jurisdiction (the “primary jurisdiction”). Accordingly, the Commission is closely monitoring the proceedings being conducted by the Alderney Gambling Control Commission (the “AGCC”) concerning the eGambling Licences held by Filco Limited, operating as “Full Tilt Poker”. The AGCC has confirmed to the Commission that, although the eGambling Licences held by Filco Limited are presently suspended pending the outcome of a hearing, these licences are still considered to be valid.

While the KGC’s regulations are quite unclear, and they do not in fact directly say that the Secondary CPA allows Full Tilt Poker to restart its business under Kahnawake regulations. But, it is not clear what the purpose of this renewal would be if it did not grant FTP this right under Kahnawake regulations. However, Alderney regulations seem to say that FTP may not do so; Alderney’s June 29th statement announcing the suspension of FTP’s licenses said clearly that the four Full Tilt companies licensed by the AGCC must “cease to register new customers, accept deposits from existing customers, allow existing customers to withdraw funds that are held in their accounts, and permit customers to participate in any form of poker game play or gambling transaction.”2

The AGCC suspended Full Tilt’s license on June 29th, causing the poker site to shut down. A hearing was scheduled for July 27th to discuss the suspension, but that hearing was adjourned without any other decisions and rescheduled to “commence as soon as possible and in any event not later than 15th September.”

Edited on 8/1/2011 7:11 PM EDT: Changed “In Friday’s announced” to “In Friday’s announcement.”
Edited on 8/1/2011 10:05 PM EDT: Changed “law” to “regulations”.
Edited on 8/2/2011 10:38 AM EDT: Fixed a minor grammar error.


  1. See the KGC’s regulations, starting at regulation 46.
  2. The KGC’s Secondary CPA is actually in the name of Kolyma Corporation A.V.V., which is not one of the four companies licensed by Alderney. Subject: Poker does not know the exact relationship between Kolyma Corporation A.V.V and the four FTP companies licensed by Alderney, Vantage Limited, Oxalic Limited, Filco Limited, and Orinic Limited.

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28 Responses to KGC Upholds FTP’s Authorization

  1. Anon
    August 1, 2011 at 8:36 PM EDT

    If only the KGC was at all credible; seems to me by granting this secondary license even after the Alderney committee has suspended FTPs activities that they are actively looking for a loophole to allow FTP to begin trading again. Even if FTP starts up again, will be interesting to see which payment processors still want to do business with them, and who actually still wants to play there.

  2. David Bingham
    August 1, 2011 at 9:33 PM EDT

    I think you are using the word ‘law’ when you mean ‘regulations’
    But useful story, thanks

    • Thomas Bakker
      August 1, 2011 at 10:06 PM EDT

      Fixed, thanks.

    • pokerbandit22
      September 12, 2011 at 12:48 AM EDT


  3. David Bingham
    August 1, 2011 at 9:35 PM EDT

    Or, ‘law’ where you mean ‘rules’

    Any idea what this cost FTP? Or what it should cost under standard fees?

    • Noah Stephens-Davidowitz
      August 1, 2011 at 11:59 PM EDT

      The KGC rules are very vague, but most applications cost $25k.

  4. Kevin
    August 1, 2011 at 9:46 PM EDT

    It seems pretty obvious from what has happened already, that FTP will use this authorization as further leverage against the AGCC to lift the suspension of its license.

    Consider the following:

    - Immediately after the AGCC shutdown, FTP started activities that could lead one to believe it was just going to shift its business operations to the KGC. (Which if allowed makes the whole ‘licensing’ idea more dubious then it was already).

    - Then, nothing happens. Although it is only speculation, the KGC may have felt pressure from its other licensees not to allow FTP to operate in the face of the AGCC suspension.

    - Then the AGCC hearing happens. And one of the main points of contention is FTP’s outstanding bill to the AGCC of several hundred thousand dollars. A psuedo ‘Mexican Standoff’ is created where the AGCC wants its money now, and FTP says to lift the suspension and then we’ll pay you. (Which really really adds a cloud over the proceedings, making people wonder whether the AGCC is acting in its own best interests…or in the interests of the players.

    - And now the KGC opens the secondary license. All this does is put further pressure on the AGCC to lift the FTP license suspension…otherwise FTP could simply pack it up and move its business to the KGC. It isn’t like there is any legislation anywhere that could stop them. And considering that UB and AP were able to operate for years and years with the KGC, I don’t see how the KGC is going to turn FTP down if they want to go online again. It’s all about money in the end, and it certainly isn’t the players money or interests that are being
    looked out for here. I have no doubt there are enough ‘suckers’ out there that will happily play on FTP again, even after all the problems.

    I’m predicting the AGCC will cave in short order.

    • peter
      August 1, 2011 at 11:46 PM EDT

      well im not sure i actually got this, so if FTP decides tomorrow to move to KGC can they actually open the site the next day? And if so will the europeans be able to withdraw their money?

    August 1, 2011 at 10:02 PM EDT

    Maybe one day we will be able to cash out. Maybe one day.

  6. peter
    August 2, 2011 at 12:15 AM EDT

    And another thing, if this was announced friday while are we learning about it today? :/

    • Noah Stephens-Davidowitz
      August 2, 2011 at 12:27 AM EDT

      It seems the KGC did not e-mail this press release to media. We simply didn’t notice it until today.

  7. Poker Gratis
    August 2, 2011 at 7:45 AM EDT

    It would be great if Full tilt comes back online tomorrow with KGC license…

  8. Alan
    August 2, 2011 at 8:26 AM EDT

    Good job staying on top of these developments.

    Couple of small grammar points/typos:

    Fourth paragraph: “in spite of the fact that its primary LICENSE has been suspended”.

    Footnote no. 2, last sentence: I think a colon is needed after “Alderney,” rather than a comma.

    Keep up the great work,


  9. Steve
    August 2, 2011 at 8:34 AM EDT

    All that matters is that FT pays its customers. Maybe their trying to find a loophole to escape the 250k fine, but either way, no ones going to play on a site that you can’t get paid on.

  10. Bob
    August 2, 2011 at 5:57 PM EDT

    These are the same monkeys that regulated UB and AP during the cheating scandal? And let them keep their license. Yeah… this is a vote of credibility for FTP. WTF?

    • antoine hunt
      August 3, 2011 at 4:41 AM EDT

      erm no matter what happens if full tilt comes back online i do agree that all players from usa will cash out of course and many other non- usa players will cash out but i do think there will still be many people who will play on there, even if it means cashing out all there bankroll then just depoist a smaller amount, plus soon as full tilt over overlay in the mtt people will come flooding back!!

      All the people who say they will never play there again are kidding themselfs, we are poker players and go where the value is yeah sure i get the part about how messed up full tilt has been but i will bet anyone that if full tilt goes back online all the fish will come back to them be it for rush poker or overlay in mtt full tilt will never become a small site you will see how short a memory people have if full tilt come back.

  11. robert
    August 4, 2011 at 2:18 PM EDT

    i’ll play at ftp if i get my money. don’t give two hoots who the license is with.

    full tilt is so gay about not giving news of the money owe to us.

    the best sofaware and games in poker in my view.

    the best poker site there is/was.

  12. marlon 13
    August 5, 2011 at 12:55 PM EDT

    im with BoB – that fat indian who makes his own rules ( his gaming commision) who never recieved penalty for cheatin scandal (UB) which he would not release name of employee(s) involved in Ub scandal – online poker is that f-d up ? so full tilts 1 friend lol.WTH does howard lederer have to say – Mr silent money launderer – u guys thought ur shyt didn’t stink – LLLLLLLLOOOOOOOOLLLLLL

  13. d.j. bates
    August 6, 2011 at 2:51 PM EDT

    Is it just me or is it extremely amateurish to have writers in the comment column getting into an argument defending what they wrote? Never in my life have I got on a legit site like and seen something like that. Will there ever be a single legit poker website?

    All these so-called poker info sites are similar to FTP. Poker people getting into a business they know nothing about and making themselves look foolish.

    That being said, I’m on here because I want to be, and because the options are so few, so thanks for the effort and info guys. Just try to be more legit and the followers will come and there will be no need for writers and employees with fake names to get on the comment board.

    • Noah Stephens-Davidowitz
      August 6, 2011 at 4:48 PM EDT

      I don’t see anything wrong with responding to reader comments. I think readers appreciate it. In the comments to this article, I posted twice, both times responding to a question that was asked of me…

      Can you explain why you think we shouldn’t be responding to comments?

  14. d.j. bates
    August 6, 2011 at 6:54 PM EDT

    I certainly didn’t see anyone address you with a question while reading the comments. It just sounds as if u r defending yourself in this and other articles, therefore it makes the website look amateurish and like you must justify yourself instead for what you’ve done.

    Write another article if you feel the need to reveal more information.

  15. Brett
    August 6, 2011 at 9:31 PM EDT

    You don’t see “legit sites” answering in the comments section because those sites are heavily trafficked and commented upon. With a niche news site that gets maybe a dozen comments, what harm does it do to answer questions that readers have?

    • d.j. bates
      August 7, 2011 at 1:24 PM EDT

      As long as it’s understood that most of the comments are from homemade, I guess you’d call it that, names that are mostly staff guys trying to stir up conversation I guess it is fine. I just thought journalism was about honesty and integrity, so it is understandable that when poker players get involved a lot of that may be left out.

      I am not saying that writer dude is dishonest because at least it is his actual name on his posts.

      It just makes no sense to have staff guys and friends comment to try to make the site look bigger than it really is, only to have the editor comment like he is a lowly high school writer defending his high school newspaper.

      • Noah Stephens-Davidowitz
        August 7, 2011 at 2:15 PM EDT

        I’m not trying to make the site look bigger than it really it. I’m responding to people. I don’t see any problem with that..

      • Thomas Bakker
        August 7, 2011 at 9:10 PM EDT

        We don’t comment to make the site look bigger than it is. We do not post under nicknames, nor do our friends. The comments are genuine comments, and Noah’s responses are useful for those readers who have questions after reading the article. If Noah has enough time to do that, why would he not spend those few minutes to inform users on our informative site?

      • JCMags
        August 11, 2011 at 10:04 PM EDT

        Master Bates – you’re ridiculous. Lack of author replies doesn’t define “legit”. If the writer stays professional always, then fine. If this site gets significantly bigger you may just get your wish… for now it’s a personal touch that leaves some visitors feeling more connected. So don’t be an ass… you’re not paying, so don’t act like you’re being cheapened, and feel free to move on post-article if you don’t like the responses.

  16. d.j. bates
    August 8, 2011 at 2:18 AM EDT


    • Jonemann
      August 10, 2011 at 6:02 PM EDT

      dj bates, I admire you. I admire your ability to make the most sophisticated and intelligent conclusion after discussing an issue factually. You discussed back and forth, got thoughts on your views, carefully thought them through, and came up with the most intelligent, wize, grown-up, and factual conclusion that could possibly be made in this situation: they are all dorks.

      I admire such a man of deep conviction, such broad wizdom, and such groundbreaking intelligence. Please run for president.

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