Pennsylvania’s gaming revenues stay strong due to increases in igaming and sports betting Rege Behe, CDC Gaming Reports · February 18, 2021 at 7:43 am Despite brick-and-mortar casinos being closed for three days in January due to COVID-19 health concerns, gaming revenues in Pennsylvania increased for the month compared to the same period a year ago. In a report issued Wednesday by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, the combined total revenue from all forms of gaming and fantasy contests reached $311.1 million in January, a 2.7% increase compared to revenues in January 2020. Doug Harbach, director of communications for the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, credits the adoption of igaming in 2019 as a Godsend for the state and its gambling partners during the COVID-19 pandemic. “One of the byproducts of casino closures has been the turn by some gambling patrons to use the online sites,” Harbach said. The spokesman said there will always be a market for players who want the “in-person experience and the other amenities offered at a casino.” Harbach said additional mini-casinos are under construction and “a strong and growing online market has emerged.” The $80.4 million in January revenues for igaming was a record, an increase of 11% from the previous high set in December 2020, $71.6 million. Hollywood Casino at Penn National in Grantville brought in the most igaming revenue, $27.6 million. Sports betting also continued to thrive in Pennsylvania. The total handle in the state for the month was $615.2 million, 12.16% more than December 2020’s total of $548.6 million. Taxable revenue dropped slightly by 0.26%, from $34.1 million in December 2020 to $33.97 million in January. Valley Forge Casino Resort in King of Prussia led all casinos in sports wagering revenue, with a total handle of $223.3 million, and taxable revenue of $14.5 million. Boyd Gaming operates the casino but sports betting, both retail and mobile, is overseen by FanDuel. Parx Casino in Philadelphia brought in the most total revenue, $49.5 million, a decrease of -13.95% from January 2020’s $57.5 million. Revenues for the month did significantly increase at Hollywood Casino at Penn National ($43.6 million, up 103.33% from the $21.4 million in January 2020) and Valley Forge Casino Resort ($37.9 million from $21.7 million, a 74.98% jump). Rivers Casino Philadelphia also boosted its revenues, with a 15.4% increase to $36.8 million from $31.9 million in January 2020. Harbach said the state’s willingness to embrace new gambling measures has paid off. He said the embrace of igaming “is the second time that Pennsylvania has hit a home run when it comes to gaming,” noting that that the state legalized brick-and-mortar casinos in 2006. “That was before the last financial crisis in 2008,” Harbach said. “(Pennsylvania) was once again ahead of the curve. When the law passed and casinos opened at the end of 2006, other states such as Maryland had also enacted the law, but their casinos had not been constructed yet. The financial crunch hit, and nothing got built. We were operating prior to that hitting, and this is twice now we’ve been ahead of the curve.” Rege Behe is lead contributor to CDC Gaming Reports. He can be reached at email@example.com. Please follow @RegeBehe_exPTR on Twitter.