In New Jersey Online Gambling Revenue, It’s Still Golden Nugget By A Mile

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While the US online gambling industry keeps one eye on the Wire Act, it’s business as usual in New Jersey.

The NJ online gambling operators combined to earn $38.3 million in May, which is their second-most profitable month to date. Only March’s haul of $39.1 million was greater. NJ online poker sites enjoyed a slight course correction, with $1.8 million in revenue representing a small increase over April’s numbers.

Data comes from the monthly report published Wednesday by the NJ Division of Gaming Enforcement.

NJ online gambling highlights — May 2019

Here’s what jumps off the page in the May report:

  • Total online gambling revenue of $38,340,638 is the second-highest total for any month since launch.
  • Revenue crested $30 million with ease, extending a streak that dates back to the start of the year.
  • Standalone online casino revenue of $36,542,906 would have been a new record, too, if not for an exceptional March.
  • Combined revenue was up 58% compared to last May ($24.3 million).

It comes as no surprise to see Golden Nugget atop the podium once again in May. Its $14 million in internet revenue is, in fact, not far off the $17.1 million haul for its brick-and-mortar casino in the Marina District. The Nugget has led the online market every month since December 2016.

Thanks to the recent addition of DraftKings Casino, the Resorts network retained the silver medal with $8 million in revenue for the month — also its second-best ever. Borgata, in third place, means there’s no change at the top, though its May revenue of $5.9 million does represent a new personal best.

Including NJ online sports betting, the internet accounted for almost $54 million in total revenue for the month.

NJ online gambling revenue breakdown

Revenue / month-over-month change (normalized) / year-over-year change:

  • Total: $38.3 million / +1.4% / +57.8%
  • Online casinos: $36.5 million / +1.3% / +63.3%
  • Online poker sites: $1.8 million / +4.3% / -6.8%

The online casino vertical is absolutely thriving.

Operators are consistently churning out $30 million months, a milestone that was objectively out of reach not so long ago. Revenue never stopped growing, mind you, but it felt like the market was approaching its ceiling. The legalization of sports betting, however, coincides with an upward trend that is much steeper.

Here’s a simplified timeline of NJ online casino growth:

  • Launch: November 2013
  • $10 million milestone: March 2015
  • $20 million milestone: January 2018
  • $30 million milestone: January 2019

Online poker, of course, continues to struggle to recover to its early-2014 levels.

Revenue for the vertical has been trending steadily downward over the past few years, though the May report does show a slight uptick. Previous numbers indicate that there’s plenty of untapped potential in this market, especially with the relatively new addition of multi-state poker.

Land-based casino revenue was up more than 15% in the annual comparison, by the way.

NJ online sports betting revenue

  • Total NJ sports betting: $15.5 million
  • Online sports betting: $13.7 million

Online wagering once again accounted for more than 80% of all sports betting revenue — 88% for May, in fact. Extending the recent trend, FanDuel Sportsbook continues to assert its dominance over the competition. The market leader was responsible for $8.7 million of the total revenue by itself.

Get more on the NJ sports betting numbers on Legal Sports Report.

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NJ online gambling winners and losers

  • Borgata (Borgata, playMGM, Pala, partypoker): It was a good month for the Borgata network, reaching a new record with $5,509,496 in online casino revenue. Online poker revenue via the partypoker brand was sub-$400,000 and pretty much flat from month to month.
  • Caesars (888, Caesars, Harrah’s, WSOP NJ): As it has all year long, Caesars hovered around $3.75 million in revenue for May. That’s good enough to keep it locked in a battle for fourth place, though the leaders have opened up a gap over the chase pack. The 888/WSOP network controlled about 43% of the NJ online poker market during the month.
  • Golden Nugget (BetfairGolden Nugget, SugarHouse): Despite a charge from the second- and third-place operators, nobody is close to challenging Golden Nugget at the top. May was its second month with more than $14 million in revenue, and the gap back to the nearest challenger is more than $6 million. The feat is even more impressive when you consider that its network of gambling sites does not include online poker.
  • Hard Rock (Hard Rock): Still working to establish a foothold in the market, online revenue for Hard Rock was almost dead flat at $1.5 million for the month. It’s second from the bottom of the report.
  • Ocean Resort (Ocean Resort): Ocean Resort continues to bring up the rear among operators, though it did enjoy a May rebound after a particularly lackluster April. Including the $476,435 from this reporting period, it has generated just $5.1 million in total revenue since launching 11 months ago.
  • Resorts AC (DraftKingsMohegan Sun, PokerStarsResorts): Life is pretty good for the Resorts network, largely thanks to the recent addition of casino games to the DraftKings platform. Its online casino revenue of $7.3 million is just off its all-time record and up more than 150% over the last year. PokerStars was the only online NJ online poker site that recorded month-to-month growth.
  • Tropicana (Tropicana, Virgin): Tropicana is the one battling with Caesars from month to month, hovering around $4 million for several years. It inched back ahead of Caesars with $3.9 million in online casino revenue for May, though its lack of an online poker platform kept it in fifth place overall.

Detailed numbers by operator/product

 May 2019Apr. 2019 (+1 day)+/- month over monthMay 2018+/- year over year
Borgata poker$394,272$403,993-2.41%$442,677-10.93%
Borgata casino$5,509,496$5,241,265+5.12%$4,138,693+33.12%
Borgata overall$5,903,768$5,645,258+4.58%$4,581,370+28.86%
Caesars poker$715,168$741,873-3.60%$770,348-7.16%
Caesars casino$3,759,158$3,989,857-5.78%$3,321,081+13.19%
Caesars overall$4,474,326$4,731,730-5.44%$4,091,429+9.36%
Golden Nugget casino$14,078,208$14,316,345-1.66%$8,600,364+63.69%
Hard Rock casino$1,518,438$1,606,743-5.50%$-N/A
Ocean Resort casino$476,435$318,689+49.50%$-N/A
Resorts poker$688,292$577,710+19.14%$716,668-3.96%
Resorts casino$7,283,681$6,797,686+7.15%$2,910,644+150.24%
Resorts overall$7,971,973$7,375,396+8.09%$3,627,312+119.78%
Trop casino$3,917,490$3,808,203+2.87%$3,402,146+15.15%
Total poker$1,797,732$1,723,576+4.30%$1,929,693-6.84%
Total casino$36,542,906$36,078,789+1.29%$22,372,928+63.34%
Total overall$38,340,638$37,802,365+1.42%$24,302,621+57.76%
- Eric is a reporter and writer covering regulated US gambling, sports betting, and DFS. He comes from a poker background, formerly on staff at PokerNews and the World Poker Tour.
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