Michigan Online Casinos Run Hot During Cold Weather

Shutterstock/John McCormick

February may be cold, but it’s generally a hot month for online casinos, as it marks the end of NFL season.

With March Madness approaching, bettors aren’t likely to withdraw their balances. At the same time, they have relatively fewer events to bet on during the window between Super Bowl and the beginning of that NCAA tournament.

What better time for those online gamblers to try their luck at a few casino games instead?

This year’s performance was no exception. Only Delaware saw revenue tumble, while every other state with legal online casinos enjoyed a significant upswing.

Foremost among these was Michigan, which set state records across the board: total revenue, daily average revenue, and revenue growth. It’s fairly rare to set a record for total revenue in February, due to its short length, which speaks to just how strong that growth was.

Michigan’s massive month

It’s often the case in this industry that a good month follows a bad one or vice versa. There’s nothing mystical about that, just a basic statistical principle that comes up whenever there’s random volatility in play. If you pull a low card from a deck, the odds are that the next one will be higher than the one you just pulled.

From December to January, Michigan online casinos and poker rooms saw their daily average revenue decline slightly, while the other large states were both up by a few percent. We would therefore have expected Michigan to beat them this month. What we wouldn’t have expected is the margin by which it did.

Taken collectively, Michigan online casinos saw their daily average revenue jump 12.1% in February, something never before seen in the state. In fact, it’s the first time the monthly increase has crept into double-digit percentages. With a monthly total of nearly $123 million, it has closed to within 6% of the New Jersey market, and just 0.8% of Pennsylvania. We could therefore see Michigan pull into second place among iGaming states quite soon.

A big chunk of that comes from market leader BetMGM Casino, which beat most of its competitors with an increase of 18.3%. It increased its market share by two full percentage points in the process, to 38.2%. Its top three competitors taken together hold a similar share, at 38.7%, leaving only 23.2% for the other ten sites.

FanDuel Casino and Four Winds did better still, up 22.2% and 25.5% respectively. At the other extreme, Barstool, PointsBet and the soon-to-be-defunct TwinSpires all saw revenue fall by double-digit percentages.

February 2022 was Michigan's first-ever monthly increase of over 10% in daily average revenue

Data: Michigan Gaming Control Board / Graph: Online Poker Report

New Jersey online casino revenue

New Jersey online gambling sites’ February performance wasn’t quite as spectacular as it was up in Michigan. Nonetheless, with an increase of 4.4% from January, it did manage to set a net record for daily average revenue. Total GGR didn’t set a record, but only because of the short month.

Annual growth remained strong, at 38.6%.

Compared to Michigan, there was also relatively movement in terms of market share. Most of the major license-holders saw increases in keeping with the market average. Resorts (home to DraftKings and PokerStars among other brands) trailed behind with almost no growth, while Caesars had a good month, up nearly 11%.

There was more movement among the smaller licenses. Ocean Resort had an abysmal month, plummeting by more than one-third, while Bally’s picked up by 24%. That also produced the only change in relative rankings in the state, as Bally’s moved into seventh place and Ocean fell to last in the market.

Pennsylvania online casino revenue

Pennsylvania’s February was very similar to New Jersey’s. Total revenue for the month was down slightly, to $124 million, but the daily average increased 5.4%.

Annual growth for the two states has fallen into near-lockstep as well. Pennsylvania’s February 2022 numbers were up 36.6% compared to February 2021, just a slightly weaker gain than New Jersey’s.

There was a bit more variation between licenses in the Keystone State, however. The top dog for PA online casinos is, as always, the Hollywood omnibus license, now being used by five different brands including both BetMGM and DraftKings. Its revenue increased 11.6% and its market share swelled to 41.7%.

On the negative side of things, the slide for Parx and Unibet continued, with those brands dropping 6.2% and 13.1% respectively.

Connecticut online casino revenue

Connecticut’s monthly total dropped for the first time in state history, but only due to February’s 28 days. Taken as a daily average, combined revenue for the two CT online casino operators increased 6.3%.

That said, the Mohegan brand did suffer a downturn, albeit a small one. Its daily average dropped 1.1%, while the DraftKings-Foxwoods partnership picked up 11.1%.

As a result, the two-horse race is no longer at close as it once was. DraftKings has always held the edge, but in November, the state’s first full month, the split was just 57/43 in its favor. Now its share has crept up to 63.7% and it may soon hold two-thirds of the market.

West Virginia online casino revenue

West Virginia was the only state other than Michigan to fail to post an increase in revenue in January. By the same token, it was the only one to see similarly large gains in February, further evidence for the idea that these state-to-state variations tend to even themselves out.

Daily average revenue for WV online casinos rose 18.7%. There were some significant shifts between the license-holders, too. Hollywood Casino followed the overall market trend fairly closely, but The Greenbrier soared 30.1%, while Mountaineer Casino actually saw its revenue fall 13.8%.

Greenbrier is home to market leaders BetMGM and FanDuel, while BetRivers and Caesars are the brands sharing the Mountaineer license.

Delaware online casino revenue

Delaware’s tiny market bears little resemblance to the other states’. Perhaps that’s why its story in February is also so different. Following a good run in December and January, Delaware online casinos saw daily average revenue plunge 16.7%.

Of the three racetracks in the state, Dover Downs saw its contributions fall the furthest, by over 30%. That means little from an industry standpoint, however, as all three are owned by the lottery, and all three sites have the same operator, 888 Casino.

State-by-state monthly revenue and growth rates

Here are those top line numbers again for each state, for easy reference.

State Jan ’22 iGaming GGR Change (m/m) Change (y/y)
New Jersey $129,976,091 +4.4% +38.6%
Pennsylvania $123,748,040 +5.4% +36.6%
Michigan $122,775,924 +12.1% +54.0%
West Virginia $8,131,670 +18.7% +133%
Delaware $843,247 -16.7% +12.2%

Notes:

  • All monthly changes are based on the daily average, taking into account February’s 28 days vs. January’s 31. Changes in the total monthly value would be significantly smaller or negative but wouldn’t accurately reflect site performance.
  • Revenue is total iGaming revenue, and therefore includes online poker as well as casino gaming.
  • All figures are gross gaming revenue except Pennsylvania’s. Its numbers consist of gross revenue for slots, but include promotional deductions for table games and poker. Unfortunately, the numbers reported by the PGCB make it impossible to calculate GGR for the later two.
  • West Virginia’s reporting is weekly, not monthly. Our monthly figures include partial weeks at the beginning and end of the month, using the assumption that revenue is spread evenly across the seven days.

Author: wpadmin

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