Wednesday May 18,2016 : ONLINE CASINO GAMING A POSSIBILITY IN NEVADA?
Positive New Jersey experience could influence regulators.
Last week's Nevada Gaming Policy Committee hearing was remarkable for more than the enthusiasm around eSports; almost eclipsed by that and the discussions on fantasy sports was a real interest in the possible introduction of online casino gaming.
At present Nevada offers only regulated online poker and sports betting, but the very positive experiences (and rising revenues) generated by the New Jersey online market in particular are catching the eye of both the state government and its regulators. And the latest record results from the smaller but growing Delaware market have underlined the potential.
In New Jersey, committee members were told, online casino delivered 84 percent of the multi-million dollar returns over the past year, and concerns that the introduction of online casino action would cannibalise land revenue have proved to be totally unfounded.
On the contrary, committee members were told by a New Jersey land operator, the online side brought in a new, younger demographic and made possible new promotional and brand awareness activity, leading to better revenues.
Giving practical examples, he cited the 250,000 new customers recorded by casinos, 78 percent of whom had no previous engagement with his company's loyalty program…and 41 percent of players who had let their loyalty membership lapse had re-engaged with the program through online activity.
The efficacy of geolocation and age verification technologies in New Jersey and Delaware has also been convincingly demonstrated under operational conditions, and this, too will have been noted.
Observers report that, judging by the comments exchanged at the Gaming Policy Committee hearing, members were very aware of the importance of the so-called millennial generation which is beginning to dominate the economy, and the potential for business in the gaming industry that this represents.
The result of these impressive presentations of factual and positive information has been that online casino possibilities will again be on the agenda at the committee's next meeting in a few months’ time.
However, amidst all this positivity looms the threat of billionaire land casino magnate Sheldon Adelson's big-bucks influence on politics and business, and his vehement opposition to the legalization of online gambling.
Adelson has already turned the American Gaming Association's stance from positive to, at best, neutral on the issue and persuaded some politicians to support his attempt to resurrect the Restoration of America's Wire Act…don't expect him to sit quietly by if attempts are made to include online casino action in the Nevada regulations.