Delaware online poker revenues were up 23 percent in August, showing strong growth for a market that seemed nearly dead earlier in the summer.
While the raw numbers are still very low, even considering the size of Delaware’s population, they’re a clear improvement over the record lows posted in June.
In total, the three racetrack casinos in Delaware saw their shared online poker network bring in $38,654 in revenue for August. That was up from just over $31,000 in July, which was in turn up 22 percent from the June low.
These figures are significantly below the revenues seen in Nevada and New Jersey, even after accounting for the state’s smaller population (just over 900,000 people live in Delaware).
The leader in the Delaware online poker marketplace is still Delaware Park, which brought in about 61 percent of all poker revenue. Dover Downs and Harrington were far behind, each bringing in less than $10,000 for the month. However, all three racinos saw their Internet poker take increase for the month. Delaware’s overall gambling take was largely flat in August, up just 0.2 percent from July.
Perhaps the major factor holding back Delaware online poker revenues is the lack of liquidity available. Without players to fill games, it’s hard for the network to attract players. But help could be on the way in the form of shared player pools with Nevada. Since 888 operates the Delaware online poker network, they would be able to connect with sites that use 888 software in Nevada, including a proposed All-American Poker Network site. The interstate compact is expected to go into effect in late 2014 or early 2015.
Speaking of Nevada, that state also released its August online poker figures in the past week, revealing a large downturn for its poker sites. That was hardly a surprise, given that July saw the end of the World Series of Poker, an event that had brought many active online poker players to Las Vegas.
Still, operators were likely hoping for better than the 22.5 percent month-over-month drop in August, which dropped monthly revenues to $742,000. Over the past year, Nevada’s Internet poker sites have brought in a little more than $11 million, which represents under 0.1 percent of total gaming revenues in the state.
Like Delaware, Nevada will hope to benefit from interstate compacts. However, there is also the prospect of more poker sites opening in Nevada over the course of the next few months. As mentioned above, 888poker is hoping to launch a branded poker room under the All American Poker Network name, a room which will share players with Nevada’s WSOP.com. Treasure Island also plans to open a poker room that will operate on the 888 network.
Nevada does not break down revenues by site, so it is impossible to say just how much money was brought in by WSOP.com or Ultimate Poker. According to data from PokerScout.com, WSOP.com has about 60 percent of the state’s poker traffic, with Ultimate Poker accounting for most of the remaining players. A third site, operated by Real Gaming, has no significant traffic to speak of.