Online poker and casino games have tripled their revenue from last year as real-world casinos shut their doors
casinosclosed, gamblers have turned to online pokerand other casino games in droves.
- Revenue from online casino games like poker and slots totaled $402 million in the second quarter of 2020, tripling last year's numbers, according to a new report.
Atlantic City's casinos may have closed their doors, but New Jersey's gamblers haven't stopped betting.
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, online casino games — where users gamble real money playing poker, slots, and more — are soaring in popularity in states across the US, according to a new report from the American
Their revenue also surpassed online sports wagering, which was booming prior to the coronavirus with over $360 million in revenue in the fourth quarter of 2019.
Meanwhile, brick-and-mortar casinos have seen their revenues contract 80%, according to the American
But as sporting events from Major League Baseball games to the Tokyo Olympics were delayed and cancelled following the outbreak of coronavirus, DraftKings and FanDuel's revenues have dipped, acting as a barometer of sorts for sentiment about sport leagues. Revenues are bouncing back as professional athletes return to the field.Online casino games have been well positioned to fill the gap, hoovering up gambling revenues where other verticals have stalled. "Consumers like convenience," said Casey Clark, a vice president at the American Gaming Association, in an interview with Business Insider. "There was very little competition from brick-and-mortar casinos in the second quarter." Advertisement
The uptick in business is especially impressive given the fact that online casino games are only legal and operational in five states: Nevada, West Virginia, New Jersey, Delaware, and Pennsylvania. Online casino games are legalized, but not yet operational, in Michigan, and poker is the only game legal to play in Nevada. The rest of the country is geo-fenced off thanks to the Federal Wire Act.
Meanwhile, online sports wagering is legal in 22 states, according to Clark.There are a mix of companies operating in the online casino game space. Some, like MGM and Caesar's, which run BetMGM and CaesarsCasino.com, are traditional brick-and-mortar casino operators that expanded their operations online. Others, like Aristocrat, which produces
Gaming experts see a lot of potential for online casino games and online sports wagering to expand, as more states legalize online gambling platforms as a new source of revenue.
"As states rummage for funding, we can expect the interest in iGaming to rise," Becky Harris, a distinguished fellow at the International Gaming Institute, told Business Insider. "This new revenue stream could help fund physical and mental health services, benefits for the unemployed or underemployed, state infrastructure programs or a host of budget items. However, gaming is not the top legislative concern right now."While online sports betting and casino games are certainly projected to grow, their revenue streams are still vastly outweighed by brick-and-mortar institutions. Even with dramatically depressed revenues, brick-and-mortar casinos made $2.3 billion in the second quarter of 2020, according to the
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