Online poker in Pennsylvania soared during lockdown in April with PokerStars PA posting $5,253,304 in revenue over the period.
PokerStars PA Notches Record Poker Revenue in April
While poker won’t return soon to physical card rooms in Pennsylvania, the online poker market has been booming. With PokerStars PA generating $5,253,304 in April, based on Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) numbers, this has set a new record, well ahead of the $3,133,019 previously generated in March.
PokerStars even pulled ahead of New Jersey in April, with the Garden State reporting close to PA’s results – $5,148,373. Traffic has also increased, with GameIntel reporting that there have been around 730 concurrent cash game seats taken by players, which is slightly less than previous reports.
Yet, this could be explained with the United States slowly trying to return back to normality. The first real test for online poker traffic and revenue will come in July, because June 4 marks the end of the lockdown period, and that will most likely take a toll on current numbers.
Perhaps in anticipation of these developments, PokerStars PA has been somewhat conservative with making new big announcements. Back in April, the Pennsylvania-facing website ran PASCOOP, which turned out a success. Last week, we saw Pennsyl-MANIA, the largest online poker tournament for Pennsylvania to date.
The latest numbers also reveal that PokerStars has done well both considering and ruling out COVID-19 as the reason behind these developments. While PokerStars is figuring out what to do next, the World Series of Poker is preparing to launch online poker in the Keystone State, adding some competition.
However, the PGCB has to issue approval for WSOP PA before the second card room can open and dive into the Pennsylvania market. According to previous reports, it’s a matter of approving the 888poker platform which will be used to allow Pennsylvania players to participate in qualifying events for WSOP, in time for the now postponed WSOP event later in autumn.
No Land-Based Poker for Pennsylvania for Now
Pennsylvania will reopen its land-based casino rooms, but this won’t affect poker immediately. At least not in terms of online poker competing against physical poker.
According to the PGCB’s 10-page document explaining the reopening process, which mandates the use of protective equipment from staff, reduced capacity, plexiglass dividers, and the temporary suspension of poker games.
Even though land-based poker will have to sit out the most challenging times, iGaming revenue, and specifically the funds generated through poker, seem sufficient to make up for any vacuum left by the empty seats at the Keystone State’s poker tables.