One of the smallest Pennsylvania casinos — Valley Forge Casino Resort — hopes it will have a significant impact on online gambling in the state.
Valley Forge has supported online gambling from the outset and was approved to move forward by gaming regulators in October 2018.
During a 2014 Pennsylvania Senate hearing, Robert Pickus, the chairman of the board of directors of Valley Forge, testified about the benefits of Pennsylvania being a first adopter of online gambling.
The casino has been a vocal supporter throughout the process to legalize online gambling
The Valley Forge has an interactive gaming partner, FanDuel Group. Boyd and FanDuel announced their union in August, and Pennsylvania will mark their first joint endeavor.
IGT will provide the platform for Valley Forge, offering all three categories of interactive gaming — slots, table games and poker. It plans to launch online sports betting in the future, too, almost certainly under the FanDuel Sportsbook brand.
GAN will handle player account functions and management, including risk management.
Valley Forge has several things working against it when it comes to iGaming:
Because of these factors, the success of Valley Forge will largely be determined by its online partner and its ability to join intrastate and interstate networks.
Valley Forge Casino Resort is a recent addition to the Pennsylvania casino market. The only younger facility is the state’s other Category 3 casino, Lady Luck Casino Nemacolin.
Valley Forge was awarded the first Category 3 casino license by the state way back in 2009, but its license was immediately challenged in court by the nearby Parx Casino.
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court eventually ruled in favor of Valley Forge in the case, but the court battle stalled the opening of Valley Forge. The casino finally opened its doors to the public in March of 2012.
Before delving into Valley Forge’s performance to date, it’s important to explain its Category 3 license.
A Category 3 “resort” casino license has several stipulations.
The property currently boasts the maximum allowable gaming spots for a Category 3 casino, 600 slot machines and 50 table games.
But like the amenity requirement, that could be changing.
Given its Category 3 designation, it shouldn’t be a surprise that Valley Forge ranks 11th out of Pennsylvania’s 12 casinos in terms of revenue. That said, it’s not all that far behind Presque Isle, a much larger Category 1 racino.
Further, there are new provisions included in the gaming law that benefit Category 3 casinos. That means Valley Forge is poised to become a much bigger factor in the market.
Several provisions in the new law allowed Valley Forge to increase the number of slot machines and table games for separate one-time fees. The law also removes the amenity requirement for another one-time fee of $1 million, which Valley Forge already paid and is now enjoying.