The East Coast Gaming Conference in Atlantic City last week had representation of over 150 gaming organization under one roof. This is what separates the conference from the G2E in Las Vegas. You can actual conduct business and learn at the same time. This conference has a more intimate feel that the G2E can not match. Networking sessions are built into the agenda.
The highlight of the first day of the conference was the panel moderated by Seth Young of Pointsbet. A valued explanation of why a wager is sometimes rejected regardless of the size was given by Max Bichsel, Kambi US Sports Director. Bichsel explained that if a sports book has indicated a certain threshold regarding risk, a bet that may be slightly above the minimum could be refused. A player would take this personally, but it is clearly a business decision that involves risk management.
SugarHouse Casino made two business announcements on Day 2 of the conference. The rebranding of the Philadelphia property will result in a name change from SugarHouse to Rivers Casino Philadelphia. This put all the Rush Street properties under the same umbrella with each location being synonymous with Rivers. A national marketing synergy can develop across multiple channels. This comes on the heels of the SugarHouse app that allow you to wager on a mobile device. Rush Street Interactive is the first to offer a mobile product in Pennsylvania. Since mobile is 80 percent of the business model in New Jersey, this should increase the revenue for the Philadelphia property. The numbers posted by the PGCB indicate that since sports betting was implemented, SugarHouse and Rivers Pittsburgh are in the top 3 in handle every month.
The CEO Think Tank gave the consensus that states must not look at sports betting as a cure-all. The participants on this panel included Greg Carlin, David Cordish and Tim Willmott. They are the respective CEOs of Rush Street Gaming, Maryland Live and Penn National Gaming. The tax rate should be moderate so the operator can make a profit and do some measure of property reinvestment. While Pennsylvania is doing great numbers at the brick and mortar facilities, a larger sample size that include mobile revenue must be examined before declaring sports betting a win for both parties. The Commonwealth is clearly the winner right now.
If you missed Part 1 of the East Coast Gaming Congress Review, click here.