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State of the Union: IGT-FanDuel, Wynn, NV and more

Insight | Analysis

This week’s State of the Union, in partnership with Segev LLP, includes results from many of the US gaming industry’s largest operators as well as supplier IGT, in addition to a fine for health and safety breaches for the Sahara Casino in Las Vegas and the expansion of IGT’s betting and gaming deal with FanDuel.

IGT expands FanDuel platform deal across the US

International Game Technology (IGT) has expanded its sports betting and online gambling agreement with Flutter Entertainment-owned FanDuel Group to cover the entire US market.

Under the wide-reaching partnership, IGT’s PlaySports platform will power all of FanDuel’s new and existing retail sportsbooks across the US until September 2024.

This builds on an existing agreement between the two parties, which currently extends across nine states and includes the FanDuel sportsbook at Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment in New Jersey – the highest-volume sportsbook in the US.

Wynn posts $1.04bn loss in H1 amid global Covid-19 closures

Casino operator Wynn Resorts has reported a net loss of $1.04bn for the first half of the year, after the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic forced the temporary closure of its venues in the US and Macau.

Total operating revenue in the six months to June 30 amounted to $1.04bn, down 68.6% from $3.31bn in the corresponding period last year.

Though Wynn did not publish regional results for the first half, it said that the pandemic had an impact on all of its properties, with each having had to close for a period in line with regulations aimed at slowing the spread of Covid-19.

Nevada regulator to fine Sahara for Covid-19 breaches

The Nevada Gaming Control Board will fine the Sahara Las Vegas casino for four breaches of emergency health and safety guidelines issued because of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak.

In early June 2020, the Board received a complaint that the Sahara, operated by the Muruelo Group, had been allowing more players on the slot floor than permitted in the state’s policies for reopening after closures that lasted from mid-March.

Following this, the Board witnessed three instances of customers at tables or machines where they were not playing and one meeting that exceeded the limit on meeting sizes.

MGM Resorts slips to $50.4m loss in first half

MGM Resorts International saw revenue for the first half of 2020 badly hit by the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, posting a net loss of $50.4m for the period.

Net revenue for the six months to June 30 amounted to $2.54bn, down 60.3% from the $6.40bn that was generated in the same period last year.

Like many other bricks and mortar casinos operators around the world, MGM was hit hard by the pandemic. Its venues in the US and Macau have all been shuttered as a result of the crisis, and spent most of the period closed to customers.

IGT revenue falls 48.4% in second quarter

The novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic has hit International Game Technology (IGT) hard in the second quarter of 2020, with revenue dropping 48.4% and the business posting a net loss of $279.6m (£214.7m/€237.6m).

Revenue for the three months to 30 June fell to $637.5m, comprising $560.3m in service revenue (down 42.8%), while product sales were down 69.7% at $77.2m.

Looking at revenue by division – for the last time, with financial results to be reported in global lottery and gaming segments from Q3 – IGT’s North American lottery unit was the core source of revenue in Q2. It was also the division that experienced the lowest year-on-year decline in revenue, with its total down just 11.7% to $273m, thanks to lottery revenue dipping marginally, mitigating larger declines in gaming machine revenue.

Covid-19 closures push Red Rock to $223.7m loss in H1

Casino operator Red Rock Resorts said the enforced closure of its properties due to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic was the main reason behind a $223.7m net loss for the first half.

Net revenue for the six months until June 30 amounted to $485.9m, down 47.8% from $929.9m in the same period last year.

All of Red Rock’s US casinos were forced to temporarily close from mid-March, in line with state orders to slow the spread of Covid-19, and did not start to reopen until June 4.

EveryMatrix appoints Nyman to lead US push

Solutions provider EveryMatrix is preparing to make a push into the US igaming market, appointing former NetEnt Americas managing director Erik Nyman to spearhead its efforts.

The supplier will look to leverage its CasinoEngine igaming platform for its entry to the US, with efforts overseen by Nyman, who joins the EveryMatrix management team as president for the Americas.

Chief executive Ebbe Groes described US expansion as “the next step” for the business.

Penn Q2 revenue collapses amid Covid-19 closures

Penn National Gaming’s revenue for the second quarter of 2020 fell 76.9% as venue closures across the country led to a $213.9m loss for the period, and an $822.5m loss for the first half of the year.

The vast majority of the operator’s $305.5m in revenue was made through gaming, bringing in $259.2m. However, this was down 75.6% year-on-year.

Food, beverage and hotel revenue, meanwhile, fell 82.3% to $46.3m.

Playtech casino launches in New Jersey with bet365

Industry giant Playtech today announced it has launched its casino content in the state of New Jersey, through its long-term strategic partnership with major global operator bet365.

The launch sees bet365 introduce a host of Playtech’s best-performing casino games, such as White King, Great Blue and Frankie Dettori’s Magic Seven

Soccer and MMA drive OR lottery betting growth in June

The Oregon Lottery’s SBTech-powered sportsbook app Score Board has seen revenue and handle growth continue into June, thanks again to the strong performance of soccer, mixed martial arts and table tennis.

Total turnover for the offering was up 8.2% month-over-month to $7.9m, with table tennis once again the most popular sport. While table tennis failed to match its $3.8m handle from May, its June total of $2.8m of stakes was again the largest across all sports.

Ontario prepares to reopen gaming venues

The Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG) has taken the first step towards allowing the province’s casinos and charitable gaming centres to reopen after more than four months closed in response to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

OLG has now set out the requirements for land-based gaming venues to return to business in the province as part of the local government’s stage 3 reopening plan. This allows almost all businesses to reopen, as the state emerges from its Covid-19 lockdown that saw all gaming venues closed from March 16.

Everi highlights Q3 recovery following H1 losses

Gaming technology and payment solutions provider Everi Holdings says its business is showing signs of recovery in the early weeks of the third quarter, after seeing revenue plummet and losses mount in the first half of the year.

Revenue for the six months to 30 June declined 40.0% to $152.0m (£115.9m/€128.3m), with the business posting a loss of $81.9m for the period, compared to an $11.3m profit in the prior year.

William Hill launches retail sports betting in Illinois and D.C.

William Hill US has expanded its presence in the US sports betting market by opening new retail sportsbooks at the Grand Victoria Casino Elgin in Illinois and inside the Capital One Arena in Washington D.C.

The launch at Grand Victoria Casino marks William Hill’s debut in the Illinois market, and the latest step in the operator’s partnership with Caesars Entertainment.

Yahoo Sports scores wide-ranging deal with NBA

Yahoo Sports has agreed a deal to become an official marketing partner of the National Basketball Association (NBA), and will work with the league on a range of fantasy and sports betting initiatives.

The agreement will see Yahoo will continue to operate the exclusive season-long fantasy game of the NBA, as well as create NBA-branded daily fantasy and sports betting integrations.

PA Lottery generates $1.14bn for seniors in 2019-20

The Pennsylvania Lottery generated profits of $1.14bn for programs that benefit the state’s senior citizens in its 2019-20 fiscal year, the ninth consecutive year in which its contribution has surpassed $1bn.

For the year ended 30 June, the lottery reported sales of $4.5bn for its traditional products, comprising scratch-off, draw-based and monitor (terminal-based) games, down 0.75% year-on-year.

PGA Tour announces BetMGM as official betting partner

The PGA Tour, the organizer of the leading men’s golf tournaments in North America, has announced BetMGM as its latest official betting operator.

Under the deal, the joint venture between MGM Resorts and GVC Holdings will have rights to use PGA Tour trademarks in the US. It will also be permitted to advertise within the Tour’s own media and via its partner platforms, and will also create pre- and post-game betting programming.

Century Casinos sells Calgary casino operations for CAD$10m

Century Casinos, Inc. announced on August 5 the sale of the casino operations of Century Casino Calgary, to the recently incorporated 2267166 Alberta Ltd.

The buyer paid a CAD$10m ($7.53m) non-refundable fee for the venue, and will pay a quarterly earn-out to Century over the three years post-acquisition.

PointsBet to enter NJ igaming market with Twin River

Online sports betting operator PointsBet is to enter into the New Jersey igaming market after securing a ‘primary skin’ agreement with Twin River Worldwide Holdings.

Under the market access deal, PointsBet will launch an online gambling and casino platform, with an agreement to pay Twin River a portion of net gaming revenues derived from its igaming operations in New Jersey.

DraftKings launches mobile and retail sports betting in Illinois

Sports betting and daily fantasy sports operator DraftKings has announced the launch of its mobile and retail sportsbook platforms in Illinois, via a partnership with local operator Casino Queen.

The DraftKings at Casino Queen Sportsbook app and the co-branded retail site at the bricks and mortar casino in East St. Louis, will allow registered players in the state to place wagers on a wide range of sports.

theScore given green light for Colorado launch

Score Media and Gaming, owner of online operator theScore Bet, has received authorization from the Colorado Division of Gaming to offer its online sports betting service to customers in the state.

According to a statement released today, the operator has “substantially demonstrated to the satisfaction of [the division] that its sports betting operation meets the requirements of Colorado sports betting rules and regulations”.

AGA report: Michigan casinos worth $6.3bn annually to state

Michigan’s 27 combined commercial and tribal casinos have an annual economic impact of $6.3bn for the state, according to a new report from the American Gaming Association (AGA).

The venues also provide 37,911 jobs, paying annual wages of $2.1bn, as well as generating $1.3bn in state and local taxes, the report, launched as Detriot’s three commercial casinos prepare reopen following the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) lockdown.

PointsBet partners with NBA’s Pacers

Online sports betting operator PointsBet has entered into a partnership with National Basketball Association franchise the Indiana Pacers, as well as confirming the locations for three new off-track betting facilities in Illinois.

Under the multi-year deal with the Pacers, PointsBet will serve as an official sports gaming partner of the team.