When it rains, it pours.
And that’s very true of last week in the world of sports betting and online gambling.
A flurry of news surfaced relating to New Jersey casinos, NJ online gambling, NJ sports betting operators as well as professional sports teams including the New York Jets, New Jersey Devils, and Philadelphia 76ers.
Sports, casinos and a bunch of gambling partnerships
Perhaps the biggest news of the past week was the dual announcements from NJ casino companies about sports betting partnerships with professional sports teams.
MGM Resorts International struck a partnership with the Jets, in which they would be the official gaming partner of the storied franchise.
In a press release from the gaming giant, CEO Jim Murren expressed his excitement about the groundbreaking deal:
“We could not be more excited to join with the New York Jets for a first-of-its-kind partnership in the NFL. We look forward to working with the Jets to innovate gaming, increase our customer base through cross marketing opportunities and provide NFL fans with a one-of-a-kind entertainment experience.”
MGM owns Atlantic City’s flagship casino, Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, and will surely increase the visibility of their Jets partnership at the casino’s sportsbook.
Meanwhile, Caesars Entertainment announced it entered a deal with the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers and the NHL’s New Jersey Devils.
In their press release about the partnership, Caesars’ Chief Marketing Officer Chris Holdren emphasized the launch of Caesars Club, a premium experience in the Prudential Center, the Devils’ home ice in Newark.
“Caesars Entertainment has enjoyed a long relationship with the New Jersey community,” Holdren said in the release. “With the introduction of the Caesars Club Sports Lounge, we’re excited to expand our relationship and deliver our world-class hospitality and entertainment in a new part of the Garden State.”
MGM, Golden Nugget make moves in PA online gaming
Next, we move to our neighbor Pennsylvania.
This past week, MGM and Golden Nugget were the only two out-of-state “qualified gaming entities” (QGE) to submit petitions for Pennsylvania online gambling licenses.
The state had 39 of these licenses to hand out to its 13 casinos and racetracks, with each casino able to secure licenses for online slots, online table games, and peer-to-peer online games such as online poker.
Casinos in the state swept up all but 11 of the licenses, allowing QGEs — gambling operators in other states, for example — to swoop in to buy the remaining licenses. Prices for the licenses were $4 million for a single license and $10 million for all three.
One of the interesting angles here is that Golden Nugget is the undisputed king of online gambling revenue in New Jersey. Their move into the PA online gambling market will no doubt strengthen their position atop the revenue in online casinos.
What remains to be seen is how much revenue they’ll be able to generate in PA, as no online casinos have gone live yet.
Churchill Downs has NJ sports betting, online casino plans
The third slice of big news in online gambling and sports betting comes from Churchill Downs Inc., aka CDI.
CDI, the company behind the fabled Churchill Downs horse track in Kentucky, revealed they had solidified a partnership with Golden Nugget AC and would be opening an NJ online casino and sportsbook later this year.
CEO and director William C. Carstanjen talked about the partnership in the company’s Nov. 3 earnings call, through which CDI will use Golden Nugget’s skin to run their online operation.
“In New Jersey, we have entered into what is known as a skins agreement with the Golden Nugget casino to gain access to the New Jersey iGaming and sports wagering markets,” Carstanjen said. “We do not have a casino in New Jersey to enter the market directly but have an arrangement with Golden Nugget, which will allow us full management and control of our own site.”
The company also noted they’re finalizing a sports-betting deal with Pennsylvania’s Presque Isle Downs.