Borgata sees uptick thanks to new playMGM online casino

NJ Online Casinos Surpass $20 Million In Revenue For Sixth Straight Month As Caesars Surges

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New Jersey releases the gross revenue numbers for its regulated online poker sites and NJ’s online casinos each month, generally about two weeks after the close of the month.

August 2017 highlights

  • $20 million not just a blip on the radar. Pessimists could have seen $20 million in monthly online casino revenue in New Jersey as a high-water mark that couldn’t be sustained. That it’s the new normal is clear after six months of revenue in excess of that figure. August revenue came in at $21.3 million.
  • Gap shrinks between Golden Nugget and the field. After an outstanding month in July, Golden Nugget came back to Earth a bit in August with $5.2 million in revenue. But it still led everyone else by a wide margin. Still, it’s the first time any other operator has been within a million of GN since 2016. Speaking of which…
  • Caesars comes out of nowhere. Caesars was No. 2 out of all operators. That’s extremely surprising given that it was dead last — by a lot — just a month earlier. That’s not to mention that its $4.4 million haul was just its second time surpassing $4 million.
  • MGM helps Borgata. In another month, Borgata easily would have held the No. 2 spot. Still, revenue ticked up half a million month over month, likely in part due to the launch of its MGM branded casino in NJ. It also raises hopes that the NJ market can expand even further.

Top line numbers

Revenue / month-over-month change / year-over-year change

  • Overall: $21.3 million / 3.4% / +32.4%
  • Casino: $19.2 million / +3.3% / +38.1%
  • Poker: $2.1 million / 3.7% / -4.2%

Poker was up slightly in August after getting back over $2 million in July. But year over year, revenue was down slightly in the month. Like most months, there’s not much reason to be optimistic for anything beyond the status quo on the online poker side.

Casino saw the second-best month in New Jersey history, trailing only the $19.5 million figure posted in March. Even with just modest growth over July, the YoY numbers in August remained outstanding, just shy of 40 percent.

Overall, casino continues to lift the market by about 30 percent from the previous year, which has been about the norm throughout 2017. It’s fair to start wondering if the market can grow even more, at this point, with another $21 million month in the books.

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Winners and losers

In alphabetical order, by IGP holder:

  • Borgata (BorgataParty, Pala): Borgata saw a jump of more than half a million revenue, likely in no small part due to the launch of the playMGM casino and poker room. It was the second best month on record for Borgata, which is a feat considering the operator sat in last place as recently as May. Will the MGM brand be able to help Borgata make a run at Golden Nugget for No. 1 moving forward?
  • Caesars (888, Caesars, Harrah’s, WSOP): After some brutal months of late, the rise of Caesars came out of nowhere. It was the last-place operator — by a lot — in July, with just $3.2 million in revenue. But this month, its $4.4 million take put it within striking distance of Golden Nugget. Revenue was up 44 percent MoM and 59 percent YoY. Caesars had eclipsed $3.3 million only once before, so it remains to be seen if this blip is temporary or a sign of Caesars actually carving out more market share.
  • Golden Nugget (Golden Nugget, Betfair, SugarHouse): A down month for Golden Nugget is still far better than the rest of its competitors. And calling it such is overly pessimistic, as its online casino was up 50 percent YoY. Still, it was Golden Nugget’s worst month since February, and revenue was down 17 percent MoM, raising questions about whether its days atop the market are numbered.
  • Resorts AC (Resorts, Mohegan Sun, PokerStars NJ): Resorts sat on the bottom of the pile for the month, with its worst performance since February. Still, Resorts was up 22 percent YoY, slightly below the rate of the market as a whole. PokerStars, well past its first anniversary in the state, was down five percent YoY.
  • Tropicana (Tropicana, Virgin): The Trop continued its recent upward trend, with its third straight MoM increase, and best month since May. The $3.8 million in revenue put it right where you’d expect, up about 33 percent from August of last year.

Detailed numbers by operator / product

OperatorAugust 2017July 2017Difference month over month August 2016Difference year over year
Borgata poker$649,905$642,2891.19%$608,8126.75%
Borgata casino$3,644,494$3,143,53715.94%$3,128,68216.49%
Borgata overall$4,294,399$3,785,82613.43%$3,737,49414.90%
Caesars poker$610,554$549,60811.09%$699,526-12.72%
Caesars casino$3,836,965$2,663,58644.05%$2,417,86358.69%
Caesars overall$4,447,519$3,213,19438.41%$3,117,38942.67%
Golden Nugget casino$5,190,954$6,249,752-16.94%$3,469,20649.63%
Resorts poker$821,901$816,2270.70%$865,150-5.00%
Resorts casino$2,702,443$2,934,302-7.90%$2,031,13433.05%
Resorts overall$3,524,344$3,750,529-6.03%$2,896,28421.69%
Trop casino$3,821,663$3,586,2416.56%$2,853,93033.91%
Total poker$2,082,360$2,008,1243.70%$2,173,488-4.19%
Total casino$19,196,519$18,577,4183.33%$13,900,81538.10%
Total overall$21,278,879$20,585,5423.37%$16,074,30332.38%
- Dustin Gouker has been a sports journalist for more than 15 years, working as a reporter, editor and designer -- including stops at The Washington Post and the D.C. Examiner. He has played poker recreationally for his entire adult life and has written about poker since 2008.
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