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State of the Union: DraftKings, Bet.Works, New Jersey and more


This week’s State of the Union, in partnership with Segev LLP, includes DraftKings Q3 results, betting figures from Pennsylvania, Illinois and New Jersey and two major acquisitions.

DraftKings raises 2020 guidance following Q3 growth

A third quarter in which revenue grew strongly has prompted DraftKings to raise its full year guidance for 2020, though the operator and technology provider’s net losses continued to widen.

Revenue on a like-for-like basis increased 98.2% year-on-year to $132.8m for the three months to 30 September, though if SBTech’s revenue was factored into the prior year figures, revenue was up 42.3%.

This comprised $103.7m from B2C operations, up 54.7%, and $29.2m from the legacy B2B operations acquired through SBTech in April this year.

Bally’s strikes $125m Bet.Works deal

Bally’s Corporation, the casino operator formerly known as Twin River Worldwide, has entered into a definitive agreement to a acquire sports betting platform provider Bet.Works in a deal worth up to $125m.

The operator will take ownership of Bet.Works’ proprietary technology stack and turnkey solutions, including marketing, operations, customer service, risk management and compliance tools.

Bally’s aims to become “the premier, full-service, vertically integrated sports betting and igaming company in the US” through the deal, using the solutions to power both proprietary and third party offerings.

Record month for betting & igaming drive NJ revenue growth in October

Gambling revenue in New Jersey increased by 15.0% year-on-year in October, as the state posted record monthly revenue for sports betting and online casino.

Overall gambling revenue in October stood at $338.1m, up from $293.9m in the same month last year and also 4.6% higher than $323.3m in September of this year.

Data released by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (NJDGE) show several new records for the state’s sports wagering market, including revenue, which reached an all-time monthly high of $58.5m, up 26.1% on last year and surpassing the previous record set in January 2020.

US GGR improves in Q3 after commercial casino reopenings

The reopening of casinos across the US helped commercial gross gaming revenue (GGR) grow 293.0% quarter-on-quarter in Q3, but continuing novel coronavirus (Covid-19) restrictions on land-based venues mean revenue remains below prior year levels.

Total GGR in the three months to September 30 cam to $9.04bn, up from $2.30bn in the second quarter of the year, but down 18.9% on the same month in 2019, according to figures published by the American Gaming Association (AGA).

Almost all casinos and other land-based betting facilities reopened in Q3, having been forced to temporarily close in mid-March due to Covid-19, and this helped GGR climb quarter-on-quarter.

GAN agrees Coolbet deal after strong Q3 revenue growth

Despite an 87.3% year-on-year rise in revenue during the third quarter, GAN saw costs of its expansion effort weigh on its bottom line, while the gambling technology provider has also agreed a deal to acquire Coolbet for €149.0m ($176.8m).

Total revenue for the three months to September 30 came to $10.3m, up from $5.5m in the corresponding quarter in 2019.

The provider experienced growth across both of its core operating segments, with its real-money igaming (RMiG) business its main source of income in the quarter, after revenue jumped 87.8% to $7.7m.

PA posts record igaming and sports betting revenue in October

Record online gambling and sports betting revenue in October drove overall market revenue in Pennsylvania up 12.9% year-on-year, according to new figures from the state Gaming Control Board (PGCB).

Statewide gambling revenue for the month totalled $320.2m, up from $283.7m in the same month last year, and also 12.7% higher than $284.2m in September this year.

Arizona casino partners with Phoenix Suns & Mercury

Arizona’s tribal-operated Gila River Hotels & Casino has announced a new partnership with National Basketball Association (NBA) team Phoenix Suns, and Women’s NBA (WNBA) team Phoenix Mercury.

The deal will see Gila River offer all-new amenities to fans of the teams, including Club Gila River, one of two new courtside properties at the Suns’ downtown Phoenix arena.

Michigan casinos to close again under latest Covid-19 restrictions

Casinos in Michigan will be forced to close again this week as part of new novel coronavirus (covid-19) measures implemented by by Governor Gretchen Whitmer.

Announced yesterday (November 15) by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), the Executive Order is aimed at limiting residential and non-residential gatherings and covers a range of facilities.

William Hill retains retail lead as D.C. market grows in October

Washington D.C.’s lottery saw stakes grow 27.8% month-over-month in October, though its city-wide mobile offering continues to be outstripped by William Hill’s retail sportsbook at the US capital’s Capital One Arena.

Amounts staked via the Intralot-powered Gambet app climbed to $4.2m, with customers winning $3.4m. Assuming there were no adjustments, revenue was up 64.8% to $822,101 for the month, Gambet’s strongest to date.

Acroud launches US online casino comparison site

Online gambling affiliate business Acroud AB has announced the launch of new online casino comparison website CompareCasino as part of its ongoing efforts to expand its presence in the US market.

Specifically designed for the US market, CompareCasino will include a number of exclusive features that Acroud said will offer a unique user experience.

Cordish breaks ground on new land-based casino in Pennsylvania

Real estate and entertainment business Cordish Companies has started work on its new $150m land-based Live! Casino property in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania.

The facility, which will be part of the 1.3m sq ft Westmoreland Mall development, will feature 750 slots and approximately 30 live action table games, as well as a sportsbook, restaurants and live entertainment venues.

Illinois betting handle doubles but revenue declines in September

Illinois sportsbook handle jumped 117.9% to $305.1m, as FanDuel and DraftKings saw large amounts wagered, but generated little revenue in September.

Retail betting handle grew 37.3% to $22.1m, bringing in revenue of $1.5m, up 24.8% from August. A further $283.0m was staked online, up 128.2%, but these bets only brought in $5.4m in revenue, a 10.0% decline.

Gaming sector “not out of the woods yet”, Galaxy CEO warns

Galaxy Gaming chief executive Todd Cravens warned the gambling industry is still facing headwinds from the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, despite the gaming machine supplier posting significant quarter-on-quarter improvement in revenue for Q3.

Revenue for the three months to September 30 fell 66.5% year-on-year to $1.8m. This did represent a 171.4% hike from the second quarter’s $662,477 total, covering a period in which most if not all of Galaxy’s operator partners had their properties shuttered by the pandemic.

GVC’s Lycka takes on new Americas-focused role

GVC’s Martin Lycka will shift from his current role as director of regulatory affairs, to take on a new position focused on the Americas.

As senior vice president for American regulatory affairs and responsible gambling, Lycka (pictured left) will be tasked with expanding the operator’s licensed footprint and regulatory structure in the US, Canada and Latin America.

Tennessee punters stake $27.4m in first week of legal wagering

Bettors in Tennessee wagered $27.4m in the first seven days of legal mobile wagering, according to figures from the state’s Education Lottery, the body responsible for licensing and regulation of the vertical.

Sports betting – for mobile devices only – went live in Tennessee from 1 November, with industry giants BetMGM, DraftKings and FanDuel among the first wave alongside local brand Action247.

Scientific Games expands supply deal with Massachusetts Lottery

Scientific Games (SG) has signed a new, five-year contract to provide the Massachusetts State Lottery Commission (MSLC) with instant games, second chance promotions and digital engagement programs.

The new contract, which may be extended by up to two years by MLSC, is expanded to include consumer digital services to engage players through second-chance game features.

IGT wins long-term Nebraska Lottery supply contract

Global lottery and gaming supplier International Game Technology (IGT) has announced that its IGT Global Solutions subsidiary has signed a new seven-year base contract with the Nebraska Lottery.

The contract, awarded following a competitive procurement process, will see IGT serve as the primary vendor for its instant and draw-based games, and related services.

Delaware igaming revenue slips to eight-month low in October

The Delaware Lottery reported a 161.6% year-on-year increase in igaming revenue for October, though this was its lowest monthly total since March.

Online gambling revenue in October amounted to $643,714, up from $246,092 in the same month last year.

FanDuel to invest in Illinois racetrack

Flutter Entertainment’s FanDuel Group has announced plans to make a multi-million-dollar investment in Fairmount Park Racetrack in Collinsville, Illinois.

The financial terms of the arrangement were not disclosed, but the property will be rebranded as FanDuel Sportsbook and Horse Racing.

PointsBet launches in US home of Colorado

Pointsbet has launched its online sports betting in Colorado, the fifth state where the operator is active.

The operator’s main US office is based in the state, in downtown Denver, and PointsBet USA chief executive Johnny Aitken said the launch was therefore a particularly important milestone for the business.

EveryMatrix applies for New Jersey gaming license

iGaming technology supplier EveryMatrix has filed a gaming license application with the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE), as it steps up plans to carve out market share in the US.

Working with its existing clients looking to expand into new regulated jurisdictions, the supplier has submitted its application to be able to supply casino operators with products such as its igaming integration platform and games aggregator CasinoEngine.

Mississippi sports betting revenue down 28.7% in October

The Mississippi Gaming Commission has reported a 28.7% year-on-year decline in sports wagering revenue in October, despite the state’s handle increasing by 27.5%.

Revenue for the month amounted to $8.8m, down from $12.3m in October 2019, but 33.3% higher than $6.6m in September of this year.

Bally’s signs major integration deal with Sinclair Broadcast Group

Bally’s Corporation believes a strategic partnership Sinclair Broadcast Group will “revolutionize” the US gaming and media landscape, and accelerate its growth in the sports betting and igaming verticals.

The long-term agreement will combine Bally’s sports betting technology – acquired through its $125m Bet.Works deal – with Sinclair’s portfolio of local broadcast stations and live regional sports networks.

Flanery to step down as Churchill Downs Racetrack president

Churchill Downs Racetrack president T. Kevin Flanery will step down from the role he has held since 2009 at the end of the year.

Bill Mudd, president and chief operating officer of the track’s owner Churchill Downs Incorporated, will step into the position on an interim basis.