A little over a year ago, the Keystone State passed an expanded gambling package that paved the way for sports betting, online gambling as well as online lottery sales. According to recent revenue reports, this seems to have paid off as the expanded gambling sectors have brought in over $385 million to the state’s coffers in the last year – this amount can be easily be equated to $1 million per day and it significantly surpasses the initial state budget estimates.
These very impressive revenue figures can be attributed to licensing fees, auction profits on satellite casino licenses, the expansion of the state lottery, interactive gaming and sports betting licensing as well as typical gaming revenue. However, it is important to note that the typical gaming revenues contributed very little to the earnings. To verify these figures, experts used official data that was provided by license application fees as well as an estimate of the revenue across all of the sectors that make up the state’s gambling industry which among many others include the online lottery, keno, and virtual sports sales.
The amounts injected into state coffers from various activities varied but it has been estimated that lottery games and the so-called “draw-based” products accounted for $23 million and $19.6 million respectively while keno trailed behind even though it brought in an impressive $3.6 million. Daily fantasy sports came in last even though the $1.4 million that it accounted was still fair especially when compared to previous earnings.
Growth Driven by Licensing
Understandably, this year has been quite busy for the Keystone State mostly due to the tremendous efforts it has invested in getting its expanded gambling plans off the ground. With such developments as the abolishment of PASPA by the U.S. Supreme Court in May, the state has had to introduce asset of regulations for sports betting while at the same time ironing out other issues with online gambling, daily fantasy sports, satellite casinos, and the lottery.
It was, therefore, not too surprising that most of the revenue came from licensing deals – it is estimated that the Commonwealth received $128 million for satellite casino licenses and an additional $94 million for interactive gaming licenses. Casino license fees provided $78 million while licensing fees for sports betting apps clocked in at about $60 million.
Well, the state has very high hopes for its gambling industry. Sports betting just recently went live in the state with Penn National’s Hollywood Casino being the first venue to offer the service. Online gambling is also expected to officially launch in the first quarter of next year. All of these added to the typical gambling revenues including slot machines which brought in $799.8 million in the last fiscal year puts the overall projections for the entire Pennsylvania gambling industry at $34 billion in the 2018/2019 fiscal year.