Exclusive: PokerStars Bounces Back in New Jersey Online Poker

After almost two years at the bottom of the market, PokerStars NJ is back in second place.
PokerStars Bounces Back in New Jersey Online Poker
By
August 19, 2022

PokerStars New Jersey has returned to the middle of the pack after almost two years as the smallest online poker operator in the state, the latest data reported by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) and compiled by NJ Gaming Review revealed.

In July 2022, PokerStars NJ, operating under the Resorts license, reported $662k in revenue. This pushed it just ahead of BetMGM (on the Borgata license), which reported $617k in revenue.

The difference might be minor, but it is a milestone moment for PokerStars NJ for several reasons. First, it returns to second place in the market after almost two years of sitting below BetMGM PA and WSOP PA. It also represents rare annual growth for the operator — and its best performance in five years.

$50 no deposit credits + $600 match bonus
$50 Free Play
after single cash hand
& $600 match bonus
Last verified: Sep 2022
  • $50 in free funds
  • Great tournament schedule
  • Excellent player traffic

The data is reported by the NJDGE each month. It breaks down revenue at all licensed online casinos and rooms running real money online poker in NJ.

PokerStars has been in the New Jersey online poker market since March 2016. It immediately jumped to the top of the market, a position it enjoyed for more than two years.

However, in 2018, that changed when 888 and WSOP, operating on the Caesars license, connected their New Jersey operations with those in Nevada and Delaware to create the country’s first (and still only) multi-state online poker network. As pokerfuse reported at the time, NJ revenue immediately jumped over 40%, as players flocked to their tables to enjoy bigger tournaments and more cash games facilitated by the multi-state online poker deal.

PokerStars held on to second place in the market until late 2020. However, at the end of the year, a growing BetMGM online poker network — which was receiving new investment from the company as it was expanding its presence in new states, namely Michigan and Pennsylvania — jumped ahead.

PokerStars NJ has had to settle for last place in the New Jersey online poker market — until now.

NJ Online Poker Revenue: July Comparison

Month Borgata Caesars Resorts
Jul-19 444,810 815,836 626,272
Jul-20 845,580 2,826,806 1,146,175
Jul-21 737,417 1,712,676 622,663
Jul-22 617,620 997,213 662,439

Being anything but number one in a market is not something with which PokerStars is incredibly familiar. In France and Spain, it has to cede to the top of the market to local competitor Winamax. It currently sits just behind BetMGM in Ontario, though the pair have traded places on more than one occasion.

New Jersey has been the only market worldwide where PokerStars has been ranked at the bottom of the market. It has been surprising to see the global online poker operator happy to take its foot off the gas and let other operators lead. Its decline to the bottom occurred when the site was launching to great fanfare in Pennsylvania and Michigan. This shift in focus — resources and customer acquisition spend — may have resulted in the long-standing New Jersey operation receiving less attention.

But a renewed focus on New Jersey has been in the works for some time. Revenue declines at PokerStars NJ have been slowing over the last year. In April 2022, revenue actually grew year-over-year for the first time since the COVID-10 pandemic. Outside of this brief period, the site hadn’t enjoyed any gains since the high-investment period of 2017-2018.

It repeated this feat in June 2022, up 1.7% to $594k. July’s 6.4% growth is the best result reported since July 2017 — exactly five years ago.

$50 no deposit credits + $600 match bonus
$50 Free Play
after single cash hand
& $600 match bonus
Last verified: Sep 2022
  • $50 in free funds
  • Great tournament schedule
  • Excellent player traffic

Grab the latest PokerStars Bonus Code!

This growth is coming from a low base. Five years ago, its revenue was $816k; today, it is 20% lower. However, the relative stability in recent months is notable and suggests that the operator has renewed vigor in revitalizing its ailing New Jersey operation.

The catalyst for this fresh attention is likely the expected advent of interstate online poker. Much like WSOP in 2018, PokerStars will soon be able to create a multi-state online poker network of its own, connecting PokerStars Michigan and New Jersey sites. This will put it on a more equal footing with its competitors, instantly improving its online poker offerings across both states. It will be able to spread double-sized tournaments, much larger guaranteed series, and provide many more cash games around the clock.

It is unknown when exactly this will happen, but it is expected this year. Operators would be wise to refresh their offerings in both states to be best prepared to take advantage of this offer from day one.

Keep reading: