New Jersey’s online poker rooms took in $2.5 million in September, a 2% increase from August, data from the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (NJDGE) show.
The data show the poker vertical has settled following a spike in activity associated with the pandemic that began in March 2020 and largely dissipated five months later.
Year-to-year, poker revenue was down 2.4% from $2.6 million. September was the fourth-highest month for poker revenue this year.
Borgata licensees take the lead
The trio of online poker sites that operate under the Borgata license (BetMGM Poker NJ, Borgata Poker NJ and partypoker NJ) have been second banana to WSOP NJ, which is on the Caesars license, since December 2020. The Borgata licensees have also often trailed PokerStars NJ and its Resorts partner as well, and only led the two groups of competitors once, in March 2016, when the current market dynamic formed.
Not this month.
The Borgata licensees finally broke through and claimed the top spot by grossing $1 million, a 28% increase from August ($800k) and a 31% increase from a year ago ($782k). September was also the first month that the Borgata licensees had $1 million or more in revenue in 2021. The last time it posted seven figures was December 2020, when it made $1.1 million.
A slip in revenue at WSOP allowed Borgata to take first place. WSOP reported $805k in revenue for September, down 16.5% month-to-month ($965k) and 20% year-to-year ($1 million).
PokerStars, which has been in third place every month since December 2020, remained stuck there in September. It grossed $666k, down 2% from August ($678k) and down 13% from one year ago ($767k).
The vertical’s market share has also shifted over the past year. The Borgata licensees held a 41% stake of the market in September, followed by 32% for Caesars and 27% for Resorts. By comparison, Caesars had the market share lead in September 2020 at 39%, with Borgata holding about 30.5% and Resorts 30%.
Online casino revenue hits new record
September was also a record month for online casino revenue. The vertical crossed the $120 million mark for the first time, reaching $120.1 million, an 8.5% month-to-month increase from August ($110.8 million). It was also a 41% increase from one year ago ($85 million).
NJDGE data show the growth trend, which began around April 2020, is continuing and shows no sign of slowing.
Borgata’s online casino operators (BetMGM Casino NJ, Borgata, Pala and partycasino NJ) led the vertical with $37.2 million in revenue, up from $36.5 million the month prior. Golden Nugget was in second place with $31.1 million in revenue, up from $29.8 million in August. Resorts (PokerStars) was third at $27.7 million, up from $20.9 million.
New Jersey’s smaller online casino operators collectively accounted for $24.1 million in revenue and held 20% of the market. By comparison, they made less revenue in August ($23.6 million) but they also had a slightly larger share of the market, too (21%).
Sportsbook revenue nearly hit a record, too
The Garden State’s online sportsbooks had a near-record month, grossing $71.8 million in revenue in September, up 49% month-to-month ($48.1 million) and up 81% year-to-year ($39.7 million).
The sportsbooks fell just $2.4 million short of the record for revenue, which was set in January 2021 at $74.1 million.
Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment, which is partnered with FanDuel Sportsbook and PointsBet, had $36.6 million in revenue, up from $23.6 million in August and $25 million one year ago. Meadowlands also held 51% of the vertical, dominating the space.
Resorts, which has its own branded sportsbook and is also partnered with DraftKings Sportsbook and FOX Bet NJ, was a distant second with $13.2 million in revenue and 18.3% of the market. Resorts made $13 million in August but held 27% of the market, too. One year ago, Resorts grossed just $4.8 million in the vertical.
Borgata, another casino with its own sportsbook but is also partnered with BetMGM Sportsbook NJ, made $10.8 million in September, up from $5.7 million in August and $3.7 million in September 2020. Borgata held 15.1% of the market in September.