New Jersey online poker revenue might have dropped in January, but online casino gaming continues to burgeon, according to the latest financial reports
Late last week, the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) released the official figures for the state’s 14 iGaming sites (overseen by five main operators), and when the numbers had been crunched, it was yet another month of gains for the online casino sector.
Despite Internet poker revenue dropping by 6.4 percent year-on-year, down to $2,151,232, any negative comments were soon offset by the 35 percent increase in casino profits.
And it looks like the trend will continue as well. Taken alone, iGaming (minus online poker) raked in $12,478,841 in January 2016, marking the fifth month in a row that Garden State intake has been going up for the Internet gaming sector.
Add in the less impressive online poker figures for the first month of the year, and the $14,630,073 collected across both sectors represents a state record.
Together, Internet gambling and iPoker in New Jersey have jumped 26.5 percent in the past 12 months, so there’s plenty to be happy about.
Since online gaming was regulated in New Jersey, the economy has weathered something of a rocky ride.
Initial problems with payment processing and lack of traffic led to the demise of two online poker sites, Betfair and Ultimate Poker, but since those early blows, the industry has started to find its own level.
And although the poker side of the industry could still use improvements, the fact that casino gaming is thriving is helping to keep four active poker sites (Borgata Poker, NJ partypoker, WSOP, and 888poker) afloat.
Back in September 2015, PokerStars was finally given the green light to return to the US after it received its iGaming license from the NJDGE.
Although the site is yet to go live (early reports suggest it could be in the first half of 2016), the much-anticipated launch will certainly provide a shot in the arm for the industry. PokerStars will likely unleash a major marketing drive across the state once it goes live, and that will not only help to promote its own brand, but New Jersey online poker as a whole.
As well as the possible benefits a major player such as PokerStars could bring to the market, New Jersey’s poker economy could still benefit from potential playerpool sharing pacts. While state regulators have been reluctant to agree to any deals up until now (mainly because the currently regulated Delaware and Nevada are smaller markets), the issue hasn’t been ruled out.
In fact, with California and New York currently making positive progress towards possible iGaming regulation, New Jersey (with a population of 8.9 million) may soon have the option to partner up with states with populations equal to (New York = 8.4 million) or larger (California = 38.8 million) than its own.
Regardless of any future developments, it’s clear that New Jersey iGaming is on the right track at the start of 2016.