It was a banner year for the Pennsylvania gambling industry in 2022.
Pennsylvania generated $5.2 billion in gambling revenue, a new record since all forms of gambling became legal in the Keystone State.
The gaming industry in Pennsylvania has grown over the years, mainly because of the increase in PA online casinos and sports betting since the pandemic. But now that the pandemic is further in the distance, land-based casinos have seen increases in revenue from 2021. Looking at the PA gaming market, there are several good reasons to explain the recent growth.
Recapping PA gambling revenue across all sectors
Gambling revenue across all sectors, with the exception of fantasy sports, increased in 2022 from 2021. Here are the percentage changes:
- Retail slot machines: 4.51%
- Retail table games: 7.10%
- Sports betting: 17.96%
- iGaming: 22.60%
- VGTs: 5.59%
- Fantasy contests: -23.90%
Wind Creek Bethlehem saw one of the biggest percent increases in the state in any category. The Bethlehem casino was the table game leader in the state in 2019, before falling second to Parx Casino in 2020 and 2021. Wind Creek regained the top spot in 2022 by generating $243.7 million, a 31.62% increase.
Sports betting revenue increased by nearly 18% and FanDuel PA sportsbook, in partnership with Valley Forge Casino, was a huge driver. FanDuel routinely commands about 40% of the market share and recorded just shy of $210 million in revenue in 2022, a 39.18% increase from 2021.
The next closest competitor is DraftKings PA sportsbook, operated by Hollywood Casino at The Meadows, posting $78.2 million in revenue, an 11.57% increase from 2021.
Parx Casino continued to lead retail slot revenue by a large margin with $393.8 million in earnings, though it saw a 3.81% decrease from 2021. Wind Creek finished in second with $272.1 million in revenue.
Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course, through its partnerships with BetMGM PA online casino and DraftKings PA online casino, generated a state-high 561.2 million in revenue, a nearly 34% increase from 2021.
Rivers Casino Philadelphia, operating BetRivers, Borgata and SugarHouse casinos, recorded the second-highest revenue at $326.4 million.
Renovations to current PA casinos, as new ones gain footing in market
There are plenty of reasons why the Pennsylvania gambling industry had its best calendar year ever.
New casinos opened over the last two years in Pennsylvania that give players another option to gamble. Hollywood Casino York and Hollywood Casino Morgantown both opened late in 2021 and are considered PA mini-casinos, or Category 4. Both casinos, in their first full calendar year, contributed more than $150 million in slot and table game revenue.
Live! Casino Philadelphia had its soft opening in January 2021, but technically opened in February 2021. Live! Casino Philadelphia is acclimating itself well to the Stadium District in South Philadelphia as a Category 4 casino.
The 2022 Phillies and Eagles’ seasons brought incredible highs to South Philadelphia. The Phillies’ unexpected run to the World Series and the Eagles dominant season helped Live! Casino Philadelphia break the retail sports betting handle record by taking in $10.05 million in bets. Live! Casino Philadelphia finished third in table games revenue (100.4 million) and ninth in slot revenue ($122.5 million).
While a few new casinos recently opened their doors, the mature casinos have added plenty of renovations to stay current, even attracting younger audiences.
Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course and Hollywood Casino at The Meadows each opened a retail Barstool Sportsbook that cost $7 million to build.
Other casinos have added several new restaurants and entertainment upgrades to attract more customers.
PA online casinos and offerings continue to grow
In addition to new casinos to play in, online casinos and sports betting from home keep growing. There are 14 PA online sportsbooks and with PointsBet online casino’s launch in April 2022, the Keystone State has 18 online casinos with more on the way.
With the new online casinos coming, the current ones are constantly upgrading and increasing their offerings. Each online casino offers hundreds of slots and dozens of table games. Most online casinos offer live dealer games, which have been a game changer in PA.
Live dealer games are played with an actual dealer that players can see on their mobile device. During fiscal year 2021/2022, live dealer games accounted for approximately 50% of online table games revenue generated in PA, according to the PGCB’s Annual Report.
Casino closures due to the pandemic contributed to a huge spike in live dealer games and online gambling as a whole.
Where PA ranks among other states in gambling revenue
PA is one of the richest states in the country in terms of collecting gambling revenue. New Jersey is always a good barometer to use as a neighboring state with an even more mature gaming industry.
The two are now in lockstep with each other as New Jersey also recorded $5.2 billion in gambling revenue in 2022. While NJ’s online gambling market had a significant head start over PA, the two states are now co-leaders in the space.
PA is No. 1 in online revenue ($1.67 billion) and taxes ($508.4 million). New Jersey is second in online revenue, recording $4 million less than PA in 2022.
PA is battling New Jersey for the No. 2 spot in land-based casino revenue too. The Keystone State recorded $4.9 billion to New Jersey’s $4.8 billion in revenue (through November 2022). Both states are behind Nevada’s $13.5 billion in revenue, according to the AGA.
Still, that’s not bad company to be in for PA.