After launching in late 2013, the New Jersey online gaming market had its struggles. Much of these struggles were attributed to credit-card rejections, geolocation difficulties and a lack of market awareness. But 2015 brought some promising signs for New Jersey iGaming, both in terms of revenue and future growth. That said, let’s look back over the year and recap some of the positive happenings for New Jersey online poker and casino games.
- Online Gaming Revenue increased by 26%
While December’s totals are still being decided, we can confidently say that the Garden State’s iGaming revenue has increased greatly. Through November, online gaming operators have earned over $134.8 million in revenue — a 26% increase from the $117.2 million collected through November of 2014. Unfortunately, online poker revenue decreased a little because, with no interstate pacts, liquidity has been a problem. But table games have done extremely well in 2015 and are up 32.7% so far.
- PokerStars is now licensed in New Jersey
PokerStars had a difficult time getting into the regulated U.S. online gaming market, given that their previous management violated the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA). But they’ve now found a foothold in America thanks to the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement granting them a license. PokerStars has built a multi-billion dollar company by offering the best games in the online poker market, so they should immediately provide a boost to New Jersey’s struggling iPoker sector.
- 888 and WSOP.com share Players
While we’ve yet to see New Jersey share poker players with another state, we did at least witness two in-state operators doing so. 888poker and WSOP.com began pooling their players in January to improve liquidity; the end result has made them the top poker network in the state while the Party/Borgata network is second. We are unlikely to see any more player pooling when PokerStars enters the market next year; but it’s been nice to see 888 and WSOP.com work together to create larger cash games and tournaments in their network.
- Pennsylvania, New York move closer to iGaming
With 8.94 million residents, New Jersey will always be limited in how well its iGaming market performs — especially when it comes to online poker. So they need to share liquidity with larger states, something that’s becoming a reality with the advancements that New York and Pennsylvania made in 2015. While neither state actually legalized iGaming, they are expected to do so in 2016. And both states would likely enter into interstate pacts with New Jersey within the next year or so.
- Resorts doing well without PokerStars
There was plenty of skepticism when Resorts entered the New Jersey iGaming market without their partner, PokerStars, being licensed yet. Nevertheless, Resorts has maintained a very successful online gaming operation, earning $1.21 million in November. Considering that PokerStars will soon be on the Resorts network, things are definitely looking good for the mid-sized casino moving forward.