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iGaming and sports betting push PA revenue up in August


The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) has reported a 5.8% year-on-year increase in revenue in August, driven by igaming and sports betting growth.

Overall gambling revenue in August amounted to $310.4m, up from $293.4m in the same month last year and 9.6% higher than in July this year, despite the state still having to contend with certain measures and restrictions linked to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

Pennsylvania’s online gambling market witnessed significant growth during the month, with revenue here rocketing 1,544.1% from just $3.4m in August 2019 – the first full month of activity – to $55.9m, a new monthly record for the state.

Online slots were the main source of income for licensed operators, with revenue amounting to $39.6m afters players wagered more than $1.06bn during the month.

Internet-based tables games generated $13.6m in revenue from $812.4m in bets. Online poker, however, performed poorly after growing under lockdown. Revenue for the vertical only reached $2,729, with just one operator – Mount Airy Casino Resort, and its partner PokerStars – offering this form of gambling.

Rush Street’s Rivers Philadelphia led the way in terms of igaming revenue, with a total of $17.1m for August, followed by the Hollywood Casino at Penn National, one of only three operators that was also active in the same month last year, on $11.8m.

Revenue at for Valley Forge Casino Resort and FanDuel amounted to $8.7m, while Parx Casino posted $6.9m and the Mohegan Sun Pocono (partnered with Kindred) $3.0m. Harrah’s Philadelphia, which led the market in August last year, recorded $724,480 in revenue for the month.

Turning to sports betting, revenue tripled from $6.1m in August 2019 to $18.3m, while the state’s handle also hiked 234.9% to $365.0m, setting a new record for the vertical.

Online remained the channel of choice for consumers, with revenue from sports bets placed over the internet reaching $15.4m, compared to $2.8m at land-based locations at a time when brick-and-mortar venues were still subject to Covid-19 prevention measures.

Valley Forge Casino Resort and FanDuel remained  runaway leaders in the vertical, posting $9.1m in revenue for the month. Rivers Philadelphia followed on $2.2m, then Rivers Pittsburgh with $2.0m, Parx Casino on $1.6m, Meadows Casino – and DraftKings – with $1.3m and Mount Airy on $1.2m.

The PGCB also noted that fantasy sports revenue in the month was up by 50.0% year-on-year to $2.1m, as the state was buoyed by the return of major league sports such as Major League Baseball and the National Basketball Association.

DraftKings led this market with $1.2m in revenue, while FanDuel was the only other operator of note, posting $905,414 in revenue for the month.

In terms of land-based casinos, restrictions on capacity and opening hours at all locations in the state due to Covid-19 meant that the venues saw revenue decline across slots and table games.

Slots revenue for the month amounted to $167.0m, down 19.1% from $206.3m last year, while table games revenue slipped 14.6% from $76.2m to $65.1m.

However, there was good news in the land-based sector in terms of video gaming terminals, with revenue from these machines rocketing by 3,989.3% to $2.2m in August, after players spent a total of $24.9m.

For the year to date, through to the end of August, overall gambling revenue in the state amounted to $3.31bn, with igaming revenue at $351.2m, sports betting $140.1m, retail slots $2.04bn and land-based table games $762.1m.