Online poker revenue in Pennsylvania dropped slightly last month, but rose about just as much in neighboring New Jersey. In both states, online poker is getting dominated by online gambling.
According to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board’s report for September, the state’s four online poker rooms pulled in $2.92 million, down from $3.2 million in August. The total gambling revenue generated in September was $415.6 million.
PokerStars was the only of the four online rooms to see an increase in revenue, pulling in $42,000 more than it did in August.
Pennsylvania online poker room revenue – September 2021
- PokerStars $1,956,788 (+$42k)
- WSOP $603,466 (-$216k)
- BetMGM $270,816 (-$75k)
- Borgata $93,775 (-$24k)
WSOP.com saw the biggest dip despite holding a 12-event Online Circuit series.
August was the best month of the year for online poker revenue in Pennsylvania, but it still fell well short of the best month ever when players in the commonwealth wagered more than $5.2 million in April 2020.
2021 Pennsylvania online poker revenue, by month
Pennsylvania’s monthly online poker revenue slipped steadily throughout the first six months of the year, but has been showing more signs of life over the past two months.
- January, $2.7 million
- February, $2.5 million
- March, $2.4 million
- April, $2.3 million
- May, $2.2 million
- June, $2.4 million
- July, $2.6 million
- August, $3.2 million
- September, $2.9 million
PokerStars had a monopoly on Pennsylvania’s online poker market since November 2019, but that ended in April when Borgata entered the market. MGMBet followed in March, and then WSOP.com in July.
Internet gambling overshadows online poker
Pennsylvania has 10 casinos that are licensed to offer its residents online casino-style games. Those sites generated $97.8 million in internet gambling revenue for September, $11 million more than in the previous month. Those figures don’t include revenue generated through sports wagering.
Online slots accounted for $68.5 million of September’s take, which represents a 71.5% increase compared to September 2020 when revenue was $57 million. In September of 2019, that figure was $4.1 million across three casinos.
Tax revenue generated from internet gaming play during September 2021 was $41.6 million.
Hollywood Casino at Penn National, the casino licensed with BetMGM, was the big winner out of the casinos that offer online gambling. It brought in $30.4 million — $8.2 million more than the previous month, but $2 million less than July’s haul.
With actor Jamie Foxx as its spokesman, BetMGM does its best to saturate the market with commercials promoting its online sportsbook and casino during every football and hockey broadcast, but the site never mentions that it offers online poker. It also “partners” with many pro sports leagues and teams, including the NHL, MLB, NASCAR, and the PGA Tour, but again, avoids mentioning online poker.
BetMGM is a partnership between MGM Resorts International and Entain Holdings. Last month, the UK company received a $22.4 billion buy-out offer from DraftKings. The offer was extended for one more month earlier this week. Entain’s board rejected a buy-out offer from MGM Resorts for about half that amount earlier this year.
Casinos in Pennsylvania handled $578 million in sports wagers at 15 sportsbooks in September, with taxable sports wagering revenue for September 2021 reaching $28 million. Another $28 million was handled through online sportsbooks, with a revenue of $6.2 million.
The statewide total for live table games in its 15 casinos was $84 million, $2 million down from August’s tally. The $415.6 million in total gambling revenue generated in September was an increase of 46% compared to revenue generated in September 2020, and $7 million more than was generated in August 2021.
New Jersey sees an upswing
Just across the state border, online poker revenue in the Garden State rose slightly to $2.5 million in September, up about $100,000 from August, according to the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement’s monthly report.
New Jersey online poker room revenue – September 2021
- BetMGM/Borgata $1,021,206 (+$221,093)
- WSOP/888.com $804,887 (-$159,931)
- PokerStars 665,808 (-12,675)
The Borgata, which licenses with partypoker and operates the Borgata and BetMGM skins, pulled in more than $200,000 in additional revenue than it did in August. Its $1 million haul was the largest posted by any of the state’s three operators in September.
Including online poker, online gambling revenue for September was $122.6 million (up from $110.8 million in August), a 40% increase over the $87.6 million a year ago.
2021 New Jersey online poker revenue, by month
New Jersey’s online poker totals for the year:
- January, $2.7 million
- February, $2.5 million
- March, $2.7 million
- April, $2.4 million
- May, $2.4 million
- June, $2.2 million
- July, $3 million
- August, $2.4 million
- September, $2.5 million
So far, WSOP.com had the best month of 2021 when it pulled in $1.7 million in July thanks in large part to a 33-event bracelet series it ran in the state. WSOP.com/888.com shares its player pools with Nevada and Delaware.