The COVID-19 pandemic slowed down a number of industries around the world, including casino gaming. However, one operator in the state of New Jersey completed a record year in 2020, mainly in part due to the pandemic. The Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa is located in Atlantic City, offering land-based services in the region and online gambling in the entire state. It was the online gambling services that pushed the operator over the edge last year, with an increase of 168% when it came to year-over-year earnings.
Details of the Year
For the Borgata brand, the online win came in at $208.2 million for the year. This amount was 36% of the total gaming revenue for the operator last year. This was a huge accomplishment, especially if you consider the brand earned just over $77 million in 2019. The state of New Jersey was able to earn $1 billion in annual revenues last year with combined totals from all operators, which is a more than 100% increase from the previous year.
As the brick and mortar casinos in Atlantic City were closed for more than three months, players shifted to online play. Those who would normally visit the casinos were going online but others were as well. With state shut down orders in place, there was nothing to do but stay at home. The online gaming market surged in 2020 due to the stay-at-home orders and people avoiding public places due to the potential spread of the virus.
Melonie Johnson, the COO and President of the Borgata, commented on the online gaming status from last year and how it helped during a difficult time. Johnson said that when the option for brick-and-mortar gaming was taken way, the customers of the brand had the option to go online and they did.
Operating Under the Borgata
There are several sites that operate under the Borgata brand. Sites include the Borgata Casino, BorgataPoker, partypoker, partycasino, and PalaCasino. The license also supports BetMGM, and this brand is perhaps the most profitable. The majority of the online casino revenues earned by the Borgata came from BetMGM and partypoker.
It was clear that as the months passed by last year, the earnings were increasing. For BetMGM, the totals came in at just over $19 million in August, then increased to over $20 million in September. By December, the gaming totals were pushing the $27 million mark.
Because the coronavirus is still an issue, it is expected that online gambling will continue to see this surge in participation. But will it last once the pandemic is over? Or has the outbreak spurred players to check out online gambling and now they see the benefits?
For analysts, it could go either way. It seems that at least in New Jersey, online gambling is set up for success. We won’t know until the pandemic is gone just how much of an impact it had on operations. For now, those who offer online gambling services are going to continue to enjoy reaping the benefits of player participation as much as they can!