PA Online Casino Revenue Jumps In January 2020, Thanks To FanDuel Table Games

PA online casino revenue posted a 31% month-over-month increase in January 2020, thanks largely to the addition of FanDuel Casino.

Online gambling in PA is off to a strong start in the new year.

In January 2020, revenue from PA online casinos increased by a staggering  31.4% over December.

Gross revenue from online slots, table games and poker reached just shy of $14 million last month, according to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB).

Online revenue continues to expand

That continues a run of double-digit increases online.

Gross online revenue in December was over $10.6 million, which was an increase of more than 10% over November’s revenue figures.

PlaySugarHouse (Rivers Casino Philadelphia) continues to dominate the online space in PA, bringing in nearly $3.55 million from online slots and table games.

In December, Rivers’ internet games revenue was more than $2.97 million.

A complete breakdown for the month by operator can be found in this table:

CasinoTotal revenueSlots revenueTable games revenue
SugarHouse (Rivers Casino Philadelphia)$3,549,970$2,420,204$1,129,765
Hollywood Casino (Penn National Race Course)$2,405,023$2,143,292$261,731
FanDuel Casino (Valley Forge)$2,081,252$375,442$1,705,810
Parx Casino$1,644,854$1,154,368$490,486
PokerStars Casino (Mount Airy Casino)$1,322,829$589,879$732,950
Unibet (Mohegan Sun Pocono)$786,447$505,867$280,580
BetAmerica Casino (Presque Isle Downs)$9,898$3,139$6,759
Total$11,800,273$7,192,192$4,608,081

Online slots lead the way, table games get a boost

Online slot revenues continued to dominate, accounting for more than $7.19 million in revenue in January. It was a significant increase, too, as December internet slot revenue was just over $5.57 million.

While still trailing slots, online table games had a strong January, with revenue of more than $4.6 million.

That’s a healthy increase from December, when the revenue take for internet table games was just $2.58 million. Nearly all of that growth can be attributed to FanDuel Casino, which launched in PA on Jan. 24.

In its limited eight days of operations in January, it took in an impressive $1.7 million in revenue in online table games alone.

Poker remains a one-trick pony in PA

PokerStars PA, with land-based partner Mt. Airy Casino Resort, earned more than $2.15 million in online poker revenue. It is the only operator with internet poker in PA for now.

But that January figure is down from the month before, when it took in nearly $2.5 million. That number was helped along by the PACOOP series that ran in December.

Hollywood and newcomer FanDuel Casino on the rise

Following SugarHouse, Hollywood Casino at Penn National was second in online slots and table games for January.

It tabbed more than $2.4 million, with more than $2.14 million from slots and only $261,000 from table games. Both were increases from December.

The Valley Forge-partnered FanDuel Casino only operated its online casino for the last week of January but did exceptionally well considering the short time period.

Its overall gross revenue was more than $2 million, with more than $1.7 million from table games and $375,000 from slots.

PokerStars still trails in online slots, tables

Mount Airy/PokerStars was second only to SugarHouse (Rivers Philly) in January gross revenue, with more than $3.48 million, though that result is due to its poker monopoly. Nearly two-thirds of its online casino revenue was from poker last month.

In terms of slots and table games, PokerStars Casino ranks fifth, ahead of Unibet and the recently launched BetAmerica Casino.

The overall gross revenue figure for PokerStars is down from December, when it was was more than $4 million.

PokerStars table games revenue was over $730,000, better than slots, which tallied $590,000 — a sharp drop from the $750,000 the casino took in during the previous month.

And the rest of the field

Parx Casino had total internet revenues of slightly more than $1.6 million in January, primarily from slots, which brought in $1.15 million. That’s roughly on par with its December figures.

Mohegan Sun Pocono, which operates as Unibet Casino, had gross revenue of $786,000. Slots accounted for nearly two-thirds of that figure. Unibet’s January revenue was nearly double what it posted in the previous month, when table games actually posted a small loss.

BetAmerica, the online casino through Presque Isle Downs, operated for just two days in January and collected $9,900 in revenue.

Tax collected from online casinos was just under $5 million in the first month of 2020.

Wire Act Opinion Still Holding Back Fledgling PA Online Gaming Industry A Year Later

The DOJ’s January 2019 Wire Act opinion is still being contested in court. Meanwhile, the Pennsylania online gambling industry is still feeling the effects.

To begin, in 2017, the long-awaited Pennsylvania gaming expansion legislation finally came to fruition.

According to PlayPennsylvania, at the start of 2019, only three retail sportsbooks existed. In addition, gambling was confined to traditional brick-and-mortar casinos.

Currently, in the Keystone State, there are:

  • Eight online sportsbooks
  • 12 retail sportsbooks
  • Five online casinos
  • One online poker site

However, a Department of Justice (DOJ) memo released in January 2019 sought to expand the scope of the Wire Act. The DOJ opinion asserted that prohibition of inter-state gambling applied to all forms of online wagering, rather than only sports betting as was previously declared.

Thus, a monkey wrench was thrown into PA’s lofty plans for gambling expansion via the internet.

Getting up to speed on the Wire Act

In the first place, the New Hampshire Lottery Commission (NHLC) filed suit quickly after the DOJ memo. Then, the New Hampshire District Court issued a favorable opinion to online gambling interests. Mainly, that the Wire Act only applies to sports betting.

As of now, the fight over the Wire Act is far from over. The DOJ filed an appeal to the First Circuit Court of Appeals in the summer. While the gaming industry waited with bated breath, the government managed to file an opening brief in the last hour before their deadline.

As a result, it is now on the NHLC and the lottery providers to file a brief. The original deadline was Jan. 21, but they now have until Feb. 26. Thereupon, the government will likely file a response.

In addition, other interested parties like the Sheldon Adelson-backed Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling (CSIG) have the opportunity (or, in this case, already took the opportunity) to file amicus briefs.

How exactly is the Wire Act opinion controversy affecting PA online gaming expansion?

Despite the DOJ’s memo on the Wire Act, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) decided to push ahead with online gambling. However, it was not without a caveat: The PGCB required potential state casino operators to address the new memorandum and ensure compliance within 30 days.

In essence, operators and game providers are required to maintain separate servers in Pennsylvania and could not share servers with New Jersey as planned initially.

Consequently, this pushed back the launch date of a number of operators. For example, only two iGaming operators launched on July 15 (Hollywood Casino and Parx). Also, the casinos’ inauguration was minimalistic, due to PGCB’s new compliance regulations, with only a few meager game offerings, unlike in New Jersey.

The market has since experienced growth, but not at the initially hoped for pace. There are now five online casinos in PA offering online slots and table games, while just one also has online poker.

Wire Act decision hangs over online poker, too

Online poker revenue has been faring quite well in PA, given that it is in its third month of operations. In fact, with almost $2.5 million in revenue in December, PokerStars PA brought in almost as much as online table games did across five operators.

If not for the contested Wire Act opinion, shared liquidity (meaning a shared player pool with New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware) would be a stronger possibility in PA. Bigger player pools equal bigger prize pools and greater interest in poker, generally speaking. In fact, adding PA to the inter-state gambling pact would effectively double the player pool of the three states due to PA’s much larger population.

If not for the Wire Act and all its headaches associated with compliance, online poker would have likely launched much sooner than it did. There would also probably be more online poker operators in the state already, along with more online casino game offerings.

How does the future of the Wire Act affect PA?

Well, don’t expect the PGCB to roll back its stringent regulations if the First Circuit rules favorably toward NHLC. No matter how the First Circuit rules, there is a strong likelihood that either side will petition the Supreme Court on appeal.

It is likely nothing will change until litigation is concluded on the Wire Act, which could be quite a long time from now.

A Tenth Divine Fortune Jackpot Meant A Happy Holiday For One PA Slots Player

The question is becoming not if the Divine Fortune Jackpot will hit again at PlaySugarHouse, but when, as it just produced its tenth winner.

Is it better to be born lucky than rich? Well, playing the Divine Fortune online progressive jackpot slot game at PlaySugarHouse.com turns luck into riches.

A Somerset County woman is now counting her winnings as her holiday season became a whole lot merrier thanks to hitting the mega jackpot on Divine Fortune.

Stephanie J, who asked to remain anonymous, struck the mega jackpot with just a $1 bet for over $140,000.

The 37-year old Stephanie is a non-profit worker. She took a gamble while celebrating the holidays at her parents’ house.

“We were at first shocked and simply stunned,” described Stephanie.  “Then, we all just started screaming and woke up the whole house.  This changes everything.  It really is life-changing.”

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The brief and successful history of Divine Fortune in PA

Divine Fortune is not exclusive to SugarHouse, but the winning action does seem to be centered on this online casino.

In fact, the most recent jackpot marks the tenth time the Divine Fortune jackpot has hit in just a short span of time. Recall that the online progressive jackpot slot hit the PA market just earlier this summer.

Then, SugarHouse’s Divine Fortune paid out three jackpots in just four short days. So far, the PA record payout is $377,000 for a meager $1 wager.

“We love hearing how our players plan to use their winnings and how these jackpots will change their lives,” said Mattias Stetz, COO of Rush Street Interactive, the site’s operator.  “This latest winner hitting the jackpot on a $1 bet also shows it doesn’t matter the amount you bet, anyone can win!”

Repeat jackpot winners

Formerly, as in a few short weeks ago, a Hilldale, PA resident hit the mega jackpot for $151,000 with a $100 bet.

Even more impressive? It was not the first mega jackpot he won. On Nov. 18, he won over $235,000 from SugarHouse on a $20 bet.

But, that’s not all. In New Jersey, a cancer survivor netted nearly $300,000 by hitting the Divine Fortune jackpot three time in less than six months. Since 2017, Divine Fortune has paid out over $3 million alone in New Jersey.

How To Safely And Securely Play On PA Online Casinos

We consulted with an online security expert and got his advice for how to make sure your PA online casino play is secure and protected.

During the summer of 2019, Pennsylvania entered the world of online gambling.

Whether you choose to sidle up to the virtual slots on your laptop or play  blackjack on your mobile device, there are some safety measures you should consider.

To offer insight to better protect yourself when gambling online we tapped Kevin Hyde, an expert in establishing cybersecurity operational and governance policies for the intelligence community and private industry. He is a career field grade officer in the Marine Corps Reserve and served on active duty at the National Security Agency and U.S. Cyber Command.

“Walking cash from table to a cage and a cage to a truck is a secure process. A smart thief isn’t going to get in the middle of that transaction,” says Hyde of brick-and-mortar casinos. “Getting into the middle of a data transaction is much easier.”

Regulated sites only

A key factor in lowering risks is to play only on legal, regulated online gambling sites. There are currently five online casino sites in PA.

  • PlaySugarHouse
  • Parx
  • Hollywood
  • PokerStars Casino 
  • Unibet Casino

Unregulated sites, says Hyde, tend to be filled with malicious criminal groups. Be aware of fake sites that ask you to download attachments.

Don’t confuse this with online casino apps for your phone though. All five PA online casino sites have Android apps available for download, but you want to be sure to download it directly from the casino website. When it comes to Apple App Store apps

Unregulated gambling sites are often the source of phishing attacks. Never click on a website through an email from a source you do not recognize.

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Should I gamble on public WiFi?

Never gamble on public wifi advises Hyde.

Public wifi is an open signal that anyone can attach to. Then, they  can run programs that allow hackers to:

  • See your internet traffic
  • Watch your internet traffic
  • Possibly intercept and steal your credentials
  • Confiscate your gambling accounts, checking, or credit accounts

“It doesn’t cost a lot to be a hacker. It’s not the nefarious looking dude wearing a hoodie in the corner. They look like everyone else. The threat is much more sophisticated than one person.”

If you are on an open signal, it’s safer using your cell phone’s hotspot. Or, you can purchase and use a VPN.  It still doesn’t completely protect you on a public wifi network but it is a significant improvement in safety.

Pay for an antivirus

Hyde suggests purchasing a good antivirus program for your computer and/or phone. In addition, be sure to keep operating systems updated.

“If you use free software, you don’t know what you are getting.”

Here is a checklist of some things you can do to improve your security when gambling online.

  • Clean out old caches and memories periodically.
  • Use good password structures.
  • Never share your password across multiple accounts
  • Choosing a secure method of payment/withdraw processing.

Use an identify theft monitoring service

Your computer contains a wealth of data that hackers target such as:

  • Social Security numbers
  • Financial information
  • Passwords
  • Account information

Nearly 60 million Americans have been affected by identity theft according to a 2018 survey.

Hyde highly recommends using an identity theft monitoring service if you gamble online. Usually, banks offer some form of free or inexpensive identity theft monitoring protection.

Enable login notifications

Online casinos in Pennsylvania enable you to receive an email notification upon login. It might seem annoying if you are the one logging in. But if someone else is doing it, it is a first sign that something is amiss.

Keep winnings quiet

Don’t post publicly about your winnings. You may gain some unwanted attention.

“Talking about your money or winnings is not a good idea.”

Hyde adds that posting your winnings can create stalkers and unwanted attention from friends and family members looking for money.

Adding Up This Year In Pennsylania Gambling Expansion

Let’s look at the ten most standout numbers that tell us the story of how 2019 PA gambling expansion went, where it succeeded, and where it stumbled.

When it comes to determining the success and progress of Pennsylvania gambling expansion, we tend to focus on the bottom line. Dollars can certainly tell us a lot about the health of an industry. Just look at the more than $1 billion bet in PA’s first year of sports betting.

There are other numbers to consider when looking at the larger story of the PA gaming industry. Here are 10 we think are worth your time:

1

Winning weeks of college football picks by Colin Cowherd on FOX Bet.

2

Shopping malls hoping to be revitalized by the addition of mini-casinos. The law allowed for up to 10 mini-casinos, but there were only five interested bidders. The PGCB has since turned down one satellite casino project. Of the remaining four, two will be going in PA shopping malls. One will go in Westmoreland Mall, while the other will be in York Galleria.

12

Casino taking part in PA sports betting. There was some serious skepticism that casinos would pony up the $10 million upfront licensing fee. The state proved the skeptics wrong though. Lady Luck Nemacolin is the only casino who hasn’t filed a sports betting application.

14

Number of online poker, casino, and sportsbooks live in Pennsylvania. At the start of 2019, this number was zero.

33

Percent of total bets placed in PA that were placed online at FanDuel Sportsbook. What makes this feat all the more impressive? FanDuel didn’t even launch online until July.

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80

Casino game titles in the biggest online casino library in Pennsylvania. The newest online casino, Unibet, lays claim to the honor of biggest site. However, it pales in comparison to the libraries of New Jersey online casinos that offer hundreds and hundreds of game options.

735

Days Pennsylvania online poker players had to wait between Gov. Tom Wolf signing the online gambling expansion bill into law and the launch of online poker.

376,893

Size in dollars of the largest Divine Fortune progressive slot jackpot awarded this year at PlaySugarHouse. The jackpots on this game don’t stop coming. It has hit 10 different times since launching in July, with two players each binking two separate jackpots.

138,000,000

Dollars the Pennsylvania Lottery says the questionably legal skill game machines in the state cost the lottery annually.

484,894,349

Dollars in state revenue online gambling expansion has generated for the state so far.

Divine Fortune Strikes Twice For One PA Online Slots Player

Thanks to not one but two jackpots on PlaySugarHouse’s Divine Fortune slot, one PA man is now almost $387,000 richer off $120 in bets.

Divine Fortune has struck for the 10th time at PlaySugarHouse.com online casino since the game launched in July.

The popular Pennsylvania online casino progressive slot paid big.

A Hilldale, PA, man hit the mega jackpot this week for $151,000 with a $100 bet.

The 62-year-old man wants to remain anonymous. Maybe with good reason.

On Nov. 18, he won over $235,000 from SugarHouse on a $20 bet.

That’s almost $387,000 in winnings for one player.

Divine Fortune has a winning history at SugarHouse

Mattias Stetz, COO of Rush Street Interactive, the site’s operator, commented:

“Not only are these Divine Fortune jackpots hitting in rapid succession but our players are winning huge amounts of money multiple times. This latest winner has now collected two six-figure jackpots and we had another woman in PA hit three times.”

The winning at SugarHouse started with a bang,  with the first five happening after only two weeks. Things didn’t end there either.

Divine Fortune online slot returned three payouts worth over $250,000 to three PA players in just four days in September.

On Sept. 1, a woman from Selinsgrove, PA, hit for $196,000 on a $4 bet.

Thirty-nine minutes after her win, a man from Warrington, PA, turned a $30 bet into a $57,000 jackpot.

Then on Sept. 5, a woman from Levittown, PA, won $30,000 on a bet of just 40 cents.

That didn’t end things either.

The slot hit for the fourth time in September, meaning four jackpots in just 11 days.

The final September jackpot came on Sept. 12. A player turned a $10 bet into $61,000.

Not the first repeat jackpot winner

On Oct. 22, a record payout for Divine Fortune hit on a mere $1 wager with a life-changing payout of almost $377,000.

The progressive online slot is not exclusive to the PA market or SugarHouse, though the paydays have certainly centered on SugarHouse.

In New Jersey, Divine Fortune has paid out more than $3 million since its inception in 2017.

In fact, a New Jersey cancer survivor hit the Divine Fortune jackpot for the third time in less than six months on NJ’s PlaySugarHouse site.

Her combined jackpots tally nearly $300,000.

Google Gives The Greenlight To Online Casino Ads In Pennsylvania

After years of refusing to allow gambling ads, Google will now let regulated online casinos in PA and three other states advertse on its sites.

Expect to see advertisements from Pennsylvania online casinos when you use Google in the near future.

The same thing will happen in New Jersey, Deleware, and Nevada as well. Online casinos or online poker are available in each of those states in addition to Pennsylvania. Gambling Compliance (paywall) reported on the change in the long-standing Google policy last week. The search engine giant produced over $116 billion in advertising revenue last year.

PA, NJ, DE, and NV will have gambling ads

The tech giant is updating its gambling and games policy to allow PA, New Jersey, Delaware, and Nevada to enable online casino ads.

If you travel to Las Vegas and expect to see ads for a variety of online casino games, don’t. Nevada does not permit most online casino games but does allow online poker.

Google’s new policy has no exact launch date. However, the policy could change as soon as the end of December or more likely in early 2020.

Change by Google comes as online gambling takes off

While there are still only a few states with legal and regulated online casinos, the list of states with online sports betting is growing by the week.

The policy change will permit online casino operators in the four states to routinely run ads via Google Ads, Google Display Network, YouTube, and AdMob.

The various platforms have specific niches:

  • Google Ads emphasizes connecting with clickable keywords, the most familiar form of internet advertising.
  • Google Display places display ads across the internet.
  • YouTube generates ad revenue from video ads placed before and during user videos
  • AdMob targets mobile apps users.

Google Ad Manager not part of the deal

Google Ad Manager, which gives publisher some leeway about which ads appear on their sites, remains off-limits for gambling ads

Would-be advertisers will need to apply for certifications meant to assure age-verifications and a responsible gambling message.

Google began heading in this direction last June when it allowed sports betting ads in New Jersey. The company soon added Nevada and West Virginia to the list.

Then in October, Google allowed sports betting ads to appear in Pennsylvania, Indiana, Iowa, Montana, and Rhode Island.

No changes so far at Facebook

Google already allows gambling ads in many other countries where it operates. The Google Play Store, on the other hand, will continue its policy of no real-money gambling apps.

Facebook, on the other hand, is generally unreceptive to all gambling advertising. The company accounts for about 22 percent of internet ad revenue.

Facebook has a new play-for-fun provision for gambling in some non-US jurisdictions. However, that’s only on the country level, and not state-by-state, and does not extend to the US.

PA Woman’s Spin On Wheel Of Fortune Slot Nets Her Over $250K

One lucky Pennsylvania player turned a single spin on a Wheel of Fortune slot at HollywoodCasino.com into more than $250K.

A woman from the Pittsburgh suburbs said aloha to $250,000 over the weekend when she won the Wheel of Fortune Hawaiian Getaway jackpot at HollywoodCasino.com.

A chilly weekend left many in Pennsylvania dreaming of warmer climates. So, it was only natural the lucky player for seeking a Hawaii getaway, even if it was in the form of a video slot.

Now she has more than enough money to take a trip to Hawaii for the real deal, thanks to binking one of the largest online spot jackpots ever awarded in Pennsylvania.

Jackpot winner at HollywoodCasino.com

The woman was playing Wheel of Fortune Hawaiian Getaway on her iPad when she hit the jackpot.

General Manager of iCasino for Penn National, HollywoodCasino.com’s parent company, Rich Criado commented:

“We have seen major jackpots on several of our featured games, and each one is as thrilling as the last! We eagerly anticipate the next Pennsylvanian player hitting a jackpot on HollywoodCasino.com.”

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Wheel of Fortune Hawaiian Getaway

HollywoodCasino.com currently offers the game on desktop and on the Android Hollywood Casino app. The App Store also features an app for Apple users.

Wheel of Fortune Hawaiian Getaway is a five-reel, 25-payline slot with a maximum jackpot of up to 1,000 times your wager . Based on the long-running popular show, the game is set in Hawaii with ukulele background music. Naturally, it also features the iconic sound of the spinning wheel.

Wagers start at $0.05 and go all the way up to $250 when all reels and paylines are maxed out.

Wheel of Fortune Hawaiian Getaway features the Big Kahuna respins trigger, and a mystery multiplier on your extra-jumbo spin. The Wheel Bonus may trigger prizes, free spins, the jackpot bonus, or Pointer Frenzy. Pointer Frenzy activates up to six pointers on the big wheel for more chances to win bonuses.

PA Online Casino, Sports Betting Gives Big Boost To October Gaming Revenue

Pennsylvania enjoyed a leap in annual gambling revenue. Online casinos and sports betting apps helped PA gaming revenue in October increase 11% year-over-year.

Online casinos and sports betting apps helped PA gaming revenue in October increase 11% year-over-year, according to figures released this week by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB).

Three PA online casinos contributed nearly $5 million in revenue last month, while online sports betting added more than $10 million in revenue

Total combined September revenue was just above $4.1 million, marking October as a big month of growth for the two verticals in the state.

Rivers led in the online casino category

The October online casino revenue leader was Rivers Casino Philadelphia, until recently SugarHouse Casino, with more than $2.5 million, meaning about half the revenue take.

The total breakdown for online casino revenue is in this table:

CasinoSlots revenueTable games revenueTotal revenue
Rivers (formerly SugarHouse)$3,977,208$647,603

$2,532,099
Hollywood$1,884,496

$237,760

$1,800,648
Parx$529,825$80,362

$610,187
Total$3,977,208$965,726$4,942,934

Sportsbook revenue was predominantly online

Sportsbook revenue, both online and retail, also moved up, with a revenue just a hair shy of $15 million in October. The majority of the action — about two-thirds — was online.

Retail sports revenue was a bit more than $4.6 million at 12 operations. But online revenue was $10.3 million from just five operations.

Valley Forge Casino Resort, which is partnered with FanDuel Sportsbook in PA, led the way with total sports wagering revenue of $5.8 million – with a staggering $5.6 million coming from online wagers.

Here is the breakdown for sports betting:

Casino or Off-Track Betting FacilityTotal HandleTotal RevenueOnline HandleOnline RevenueRetail HandleRetail Revenue
Valley Forge Casino$118,042,775
$5,800,924
$113,935,565
$5,645,194$4,107,210
$155,730
SugarHouse Casino$37,224,117 $2,720,698
$30,009,534 $1,906,859
$7,214,583$813,839
Parx Casino$25,949,811 $2,261,411
$18,443,839
$1,247,286
$7,505,973
$1,014,125
Rivers Casino$34,268,260
$1,784,975
$26,553,097
$1,085,365
$7,715,163
$699,611
Mount Airy$10,387,320 $509,253$9,746,233
$422,453
$641,087
$86,800
Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course$2,958,213 $350,083
00$2,958,213 $350,083
South Philadelphia Race and Sportsbook$2,808,684
$402,272
00$2,808,684
$402,272
Harrah’s Philadelphia$2,349,762
$277,295
00$2,349,762
$277,295
Presque Isle Downs$3,194,587
$194,829
00$3,194,587 $194,829
Oaks Race and Sportsbook$1,135,541
$162,127
00$1,135,541

$162,127
Mohegan Sun Pocono$2,093,817
$305,697
00$2,093,817
$305,697
The Meadows $773,178 $178,682 00$773,178$178,682
Statewide Total$241,186,066
$14,948,249
$198,688,269

$10,307,158

$42,497,797$4,641,091

Total gambling revenue was up 11% over a year ago

Total gambling revenue this October hit $283.7 million with the take from slot machines, table games, internet gaming, retail and internet sports wagering, fantasy contests and video gaming terminals combined. That’s an 11% rise year-on-year.

The bulk of the monthly total revenue – $187 million – was generated by land-based slot machines at the state’s 12 casinos.

Table games saw a large increase — about 10% YoY, combining with the new gambling options in PA to account for the gaming revenue growth.

Valley Forge Casino grows the most

At brick-and-mortar casinos, Valley Forge Casino saw the largest percentage surge year-over-year, increasing an eye-popping 54% – or a bit more than a $5.8 million increase in revenue to $16.6 million for this past October. A lot of that can be attributed to sports betting.

Rivers Casino Philadelphia, the new name for SugarHouse, had the next highest annual percentage increase at 33.5%. That’s a nearly $7.6 million revenue increase to $32 million.

Parx Casino‘s percentage increase was 15.9%, but that translated into a $7.5 million increase in annual revenue, cementing the property as the state’s top revenue casino once again at $54.7 million.

The Meadows Casino saw the biggest year-over-year retreat, a drop of just more than 16% to $17,029,612. A year ago, revenue at the property was more than $3 million higher.

PokerStars Casino And Poker Now Available In Pennsylvania

The testing period is underway and PokerStars Pennsylvania is just two days away from fully launching into a 24/7 online casino site.

Online poker finally arrived in Pennsylvania with testing and a soft-launch of PokerStars and PokerStars Casino scheduled to launch at 2 p.m. Monday, Nov. 4.

Play should last until 10 p.m., then resume on Tuesday at 2 p.m.and run until midnight again. If everything shakes out, full play should begin on Nov. 6.

FOX Bet President Matt Primeaux said:

We’re excited to launch PokerStars as the first and currently the only online poker option available to players in Pennsylvania. Including today’s launch of our highly rated casino product, which is now available in the FOX Bet and PokerStars apps, we’re proud to say we’re currently the only online provider offering all three forms of regulated gaming in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Today is a big day in PA. The online casino for PokerKings also launched and  DraftKings Sportbook is also launching.

Word came of poker’s advent last Wednesday during a meeting of the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB). Spokesman Doug Harbach outlined the details:

We have staff prepared to initiate and oversee a test launch this Monday of another online casino gaming site, this one licensed under Mount Airy Casino and their suite of casino-type games. At this juncture, it would include the testing of a poker game.

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Resembles PokerStars’s NJ site, but goodies and branding

There’s a resemblance to the established PokerStars site in New Jersey, but with branding for the new site’s brick-and-mortar partner, Mount Airy Casino Resort, Pocono, as Pennsylvania gaming guidelines require.

For now, it is a stripped-down version of what’s available in New Jersey. Around 200 to 300 people were playing during the after. Most were playing no-limit hold’em cash games.

The site promises online poker cash games, tournaments and larger Sunday tournaments with sizeable prizes and guarantees.

Opening goodies included:

  • Daily $1,000 welcome freerolls from Nov. 7 to 16
  • $20,000 welcome freeroll on Nov. 17
  • First deposit bonus offer of $30 free play 
  • 100% deposit bonus up to $600

More poker sites could be in the wings

PCBG Executive Director Kevin O’Toole has also said last week he expects additional online sites to roll out in the coming weeks. Some should provide poker as well as casino and sportsbook offerings.

The others in line to eventually offer poker next are:

PA online sites went live without poker

For anxious would-be PA poker players, its been a long wait.

Parx and Hollywood debuted online casino games July 15, but with very limited titles and no poker.  SugarHouse jumped in three days later, but again with no poker.

Rumors spoke to a September starting date for poker. However, nothing happened until PokerStars went through the vetting process with the PGCB.

PokerStars is the biggest online operator in the world. The company has a solid reputation. PokerStars also arguably has the most advanced poker software in the industry.

Details to sign-up and play

For now, all players must be located in PA, which is determined by geolocation.

While there is room under the 2017 gaming expansion law for a compact agreement that could eventually allow pooled games with players in Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware wagering against PA players, regulators are holding off.

That’s likely because of the adverse Wire Act opinion issued by the Department of Justice (DOJ) earlier this year. Even with no enforcement yet, until there is a clarifying legal opinion, compacting is on hold.

An appeal of the underlying case involving the New Hampshire Lottery is not expected until well into 2020.

Like other forms of wagering in PA besides the Lottery, players must be at least 21-years-old.

Required information

In order to sign up for an account, you will need to provide the following information:

  • Name
  • Email address
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Date of birth
  • Last four digits of your Social Security Number