IGT Inks Sports Betting Pact With Boyd Gaming Corp.

IGT

International Game Technology PLC announced on Wednesday that it has inked a sports betting technology deal with casino operator Boyd Gaming Corp.

Under the agreement, IGT will cover the equipment for Boyd Gaming’s retail sportsbooks in the state of Nevada and the technology for the mobile app ans sports betting site of the casino operator. For its part, Boyd has agreed to deploy IGT’s PlaySports self-service betting kiosks throughout its Las Vegas-based casinos. Both companies have agreed to a phased rollout for the services and features covered in this long-term agreement.

Said IGT PlayDigital Senior Vice President Enrico Drago:

“IGT and Boyd Gaming will create a dynamic omnichannel sports betting product that is sure to stand apart in Nevada, the most mature and high-volume sports betting destination in the U.S. IGT’s PlaySports platform enables Boyd Gaming to differentiate its sports betting product in meaningful ways that position them to attract new players and grow revenue in the segment.”

Not their First Partnership

Aside from offering Boyd’s clients with a more progressive sports betting platform, the PlaySports agreement will allow the US. casino operator to have an improved back office navigation, and the ability to update its app in line with real-time data and betting trends. Likewise, players will enjoy new features on the app as well as a wider variety of bets.

This isn’t the first time that Boyd Gaming and IGT have partnered. Since 2018, PlaySports has been powering Boyd Gaming’s sports betting facilities in its gaming properties in Iowa, Indiana, Mississippi, and Pennsylvania.

Boyd Casino operates a total of 29 casinos in 10 different states. When it comes to Nevada, three of its three Las Vegas casinos remain closed since they were ordered by the government last March to shut down operations as part of the health and safety measures during the coronavirus pandemic. Earlier this week, one of those Casinos–Eldorado, was granted approval by the Henderson City Council to make its gaming and liquor license non-operational until 2021.

IGT and FanDuel

Boyd Gaming’s regional casinos have a sports betting partnership with FanDuel. The latter runs the sportsbook in seven of Boyd’s regional casinos and mobile sports betting apps in Pennsylvania and Indiana. They are expected to launch a digital sports betting app at Boyd’s Par-A-Dice Casino in Illinois. 

Earlier this month, IGT and FanDuel extended their U.S. partnership through 2024. Through this agreement, FanDuel sportsbooks in eight states will utilize the IGT platform. Meanwhile, FanDuel will offer IGT’s online casino games in Pennsylvania and New Jersey where the former currently operates.

IGT is a global leader in gaming solutions including gaming machines, lotteries, sports betting and digital. It has established relationships with governments and regulators in over 100 countries worldwide. 

Churchill Downs is Likely to Buy Caesars Southern Indiana Casino

Indiana’s casino industry is in a very interesting position. Not long ago, the state’s Gaming Board officially approved the massive merger between Caesars Entertainment and Eldorado Resorts. Rumors are now beginning to surface that Churchill Downs is interested in buying Caesars Southern Indiana Casino.Churchill Downs

Many feel this move makes sense. This purchase would give this company a huge new stake in the Indiana casino industry. Today, we’re going to look at when Caesars Southern Indiana might be taken over.

Let’s get into it!

Indiana Gaming Board Finally Approves Eldorado-Caesars Merger

In mid-2019, officials within Eldorado Resorts and Caesars Entertainment announced they planned to merge. Caesars had been struggling for years and some experts predicted that another casino company would take it over. The news of the Eldorado-Caesars merger spread like wildfire.

After the merger, this would become the most powerful casino company in the United States. Obviously, a deal of this size takes a long time to complete. The FTC and various state gambling commissions around the country needed to approve the deal before it could come together.

As time went on, more of these commissions gave approval. Towards the end, only Nevada, New Jersey, and Indiana were left to give the green light. In early July, officials within the Indiana Gaming Board gave Eldorado and Caesars the thumbs up to come together.

It was incredible news for these companies. They have since gained all final approvals to come together. Eldorado will take on the Caesars name and now has permission to control all of its properties around the world.

In order for Indiana to approve this deal, however, the Gaming Board requires Caesars to sell some of its properties. That includes the Caesars Southern Indiana Casino. Some analysts are now making their predictions on which company will purchase this popular casino.

Experts Predict Churchill Downs Will Buy Caesars Southern Indiana Casino

As we just mentioned, the new Caesars is now the most powerful casino company in the country. Indiana’s Gaming Board recognized that once the merger is complete, the new company would control 50% to 60% of the state’s gambling revenue. Board members required the company to sell three of its major properties in the state before the merger could be approved.

The Caesars Southern Indiana Casino is set to go up for sale. Many now feel that Churchill Downs will acquire this new venue. It would give the Louisville, Kentucky-based company a major advantage in the local gambling scene.

Indiana gambling analyst Ed Feigenbaum called the move a “no-brainer,” and believes it would help to significantly increase Churchill Downs’ revenue flow.

“Churchill can protect its backyard, add to its Indiana customer base, and obtain a missing link between its Chicagoland properties and Louisville,” he said. “The company has the resources, and should have no trouble being licensed.”

Officials at Churchill Downs are keeping quiet about this possibility. It’s likely that several different companies will bid for the right to acquire this gambling venue.

Is now the best time for companies to invest in new properties, though?

US Casino Companies Remain in a Tough Spot

When the merger between Eldorado and Caesars was first announced, it seemed like the perfect move for both companies. No one could have predicted where the casino industry would be at the time of the merger’s completion. Obviously, things are not ideal right now for major US casino companies.

Gambling revenue across the country remains significantly lower than it was in 2019. Despite most states reopening their casinos, visitation to these gambling venues remains low. Many simply don’t want to play inside a crowded casino during a global pandemic.

This is affecting certain parts of the country worse than others. Casino companies continue to do everything they can to increase their revenue figures. That includes increasing safety measures inside casinos and focusing more on online gambling operations.

Some feel that this is not the best time for casino companies to buy major properties. No one really knows how things will look six months from now. There’s a chance that the US casino industry is in an even worse spot than it is right now.

On the other hand, casino sale prices may be lower now than they were last year. Perhaps that offers Churchill Downs a good opportunity with Caesars Southern Indiana Casino. We’ll need to wait and see how this company moves forward over the next few weeks.

Stay tuned for more US casino news over the next few weeks!

Indiana Horse Racing Commission Approves Eldorado and Caesars to Merge

The merger between Eldorado Resorts and Caesars Entertainment has been ongoing since June of 2019. As many already know, it’s the largest deal ever made between two casino companies. Before this merger can be completed, both companies need approval from various state gambling commissions. This week, the Indiana Horse Racing Commission officially approved Eldorado and Caesars to merge.Eldorado And Caesars Logo

It’s fantastic news for these major casino operators. This deal is close to being finalized. Now is the perfect time to look at what still needs to be done for this massive deal to finally conclude.

Let’s get into it!

Meetings With State Gambling Commissions Have Concluded

Back in June of 2019, Eldorado Resorts shocked the US gambling industry by announcing it paid an incredible $17.3 billion to acquire Caesars Entertainment. Both Eldorado and Caesars have major casino-resorts all over the country. This merger would form the largest casino company in the United States.

It takes a long time for something like this to come together. Various state gambling commissions need to approve this merger. Before it could come together, the FTC also needed to ensure this deal would not result in a monopoly.

After more than a year, it seems this merger is nearly finished. The FTC has officially given the green light for both companies to join forces. After, only three more state gambling commissions needed to approve the deal.

This month, members of Eldorado and Caesars have been meeting with members of the New Jersey, Indiana, and Nevada gambling commissions. Nevada gave its approval for the deal last week. Only two more commissions were left.

Officials within Eldorado and Caesars met with regulators in Indiana on July 10th. Some felt that these commission members may find some issues with the deal. Fortunately, they have given the green light for things to move forward.

Indiana Horse Racing Commission Approves Eldorado and Caesars to Merge

The meetings taking place in Las Vegas right now are historic. With approval from the three commissions, these companies can finally come together. New reports confirm that two of these commissions have now officially given the green light.

The official Indiana Gaming Commission approved this deal to move forward last Friday. Today, members of the Indiana Horse Racing Commission unanimously voted to allow Eldorado and Caesars to merge, as well. It’s the final hurdle needed for both companies to come together in Indiana.

With this decision, horse racing licenses from Harrah’s Hoosier Park and the Indiana Grand can now be transferred from Caesars to Eldorado Resorts. Of course, there are 22 conditions that must be met for the licenses here to remain valid.

Eldorado Resorts’ CEO Tom Reeg commented on the approval during the meeting, promising to help grow the state’s gambling industry.

“We know that racing is why you have the casino opportunities that you have in these two properties, and our pledge to you is to drive that racing business to another level,” Reeg said. “You’re already at a really high level. We’ll work to take it even higher.”

With the news, these two companies only need approval from one more state. Investors are now looking closely at how Eldorado’s share prices may change over the next few weeks.

Investors Are Now Looking Closely at Eldorado Resorts

Everyone feels that commission members in New Jersey will give the green light for this merger to move forward. Once that happens, Eldorado Resorts will become the largest casino company in the US. Obviously, that’s an exciting prospect for investors.

Recently, several major US casino companies saw their share prices surge. China announced that travel restrictions to and from Macau were lifting. As a result, many US casino companies with property in Macau are likely to see their earnings increase rapidly.

This goes to show how many opportunities are available for investors in this industry. According to a new report, Eldorado’s stock price could increase by an incredible 150% over the next couple of weeks.

It’s an extremely unusual time for the world’s land-based casino industry. Casino companies are doing everything they can to attract new players and increase their revenue. Just about everyone expects Eldorado and Caesars to merge sometime next month.

We’ll continue to offer updates on this historic deal. Our team will also continue to write about the situation over in Macau. Stay tuned!

4,000 Employees Get Furloughed Across 3 Indiana Casinos

Indiana CasinoThree different casinos in Indiana have furloughed a combined total of nearly 4,000 employees due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The affected casinos include Harrah’s Hoosier Park Racing and Casino, Indiana Grand Racing Casino in Shelbyville, and Horseshoe Hammond.

Harrah’s Hoosier Park Racing and Casino cited they furloughed 998 employees since March 16. Indiana Grand Racing Casino furloughed 1,126 employees on April 1. Horseshoe Hammond furloughed 1,693 employees since March 16.

While these furloughs are expected to be temporary, the fluid nature of the pandemic could see them lasting longer, and possibly even be permanent.

Casinos File through the Warn Act

The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act was put into place to help provide workers with ample time to prepare for job transitions and protection for workers, their families, and communities with the requirement that employers provide 60-days-notice of plant closings or mass layoffs.

However, with the unexpected nature of the outbreak, an advanced 60-day notice was simply not possible.

With the public health emergency, compliance was not something that could be foreseen in advance, and it’s a reason why for leeway that’s been given to the casinos.

According to Trent McIntosh, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Harrah’s Hoosier Park Racing and Casino, their notice was given as soon practically possible under the circumstances.

Indiana’s Gaming Figures Plummet in March

With figures not unique to the state of Indiana, their gaming figures have plummeted in the month of March due to the coronavirus.

It’s no surprise that American casinos have taken a heavy economic hit with the forced closure of casinos that began in March.

For the month of March, Indiana’s 12 licensed casinos and racinos made $90.6 million in adjusted gross revenue (AGR).

Compare that number with February’s AGR however, which was $192.5 million. That’s a 52.9 percent drop in gross revenue.

COVID-19 is also Crunching Indiana’s City Budget

It appears it’s not just the state’s casinos that are taking a financial blow, but the losses those casinos are generating is causing the state to cut city budgets to make up for lost direct revenue and lost employment taxes.

The state’s major attractions are looking at their budgets and cutting out any and all unnecessary attractions.

Sports Betting in Indiana Takes a Back Seat to COVID-19

March was gearing up to be a historic month for the state of Indiana, as it was the first March for legalized sports betting.

With sports being canceled due to the pandemic, however, it made for a less-than-impressive month. March was going to be chock-full of sports bets, with the NCAA Tournament and March Madness going on, but the suspension of the NBA season put that to an abrupt halt.

Things were going well for Indiana on the sports bet front in February, hitting $187.2 million in placed bets. Their betting handle for March, however, was $74.8 million.

Before March came, Indiana was fourth place in the sports betting market throughout the entire nation, an impressive feat indeed. They were only behind Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Nevada.

Stay Tuned

With the fluid nature of COVID-19, it’s unsure whether or not these furloughs will be a temporary solution or end up being permanent.

Indiana isn’t alone when it comes to being strategic with its budget amid the coronavirus crisis. Other casinos across the country, namely Las Vegas, have also resorted to furloughs and layoffs to deal with the economic downturn of the outbreak.

We hope that Indiana’s sports betting market will bounce back once business returns to normal. We’re optimistic that it will.

Be sure to check back for coronavirus casino updates!

Indiana’s Sports Betting Market Continues to Expand with BetMGM Launch

Soccer Player Kicking Ball Into Goal, BetMGM Logo
On Tuesday, Boyd’s Belterra casino celebrated the official launch of BetMGM’s mobile sportsbook. That makes for the fifth mobile sportsbook in the state.

Last month, BetMGM held a temporary license but was officially cleared on Feb. 25. The BetMGM app is powered by Roar Digital, a partnership between MGM Resorts International and GVC: Great Britain’s betting technology leader.

BetMGM now has four mobile states in the US: New Jersey, where they originally launched, Nevada, West Virginia, and Indiana. When you visit BetMGM’s official site, it asks, “Where do you want to play?” with an option to click on one of the four state’s portals.

Indiana’s Growing Sports Betting Market

With Governor Eric Holcomb signing SB 552 into law last May, Indiana has been diving deep into the sports betting industry.

From December to January, sports betting revenue jumped 5.6% to $170.8 million. The online handle of their sports betting industry included a 11.6% growth, hitting $123.4 million.

DraftKings Sportsbook and FanDuel Sportsbook dominated the online handle, with DraftKings alone contributing $66 million to the total number. The majority remainder was taken by BetRivers, with BetIndiana and PointsBet receiving less than $90,000.

A full list of the five, live sportsbook apps currently available in the state:

Sportsbook Launch date
DraftKings Sportsbook Oct. 3, 2019
FanDuel Sportsbook Oct. 26, 2019
BetRivers Oct. 3, 2019
BetAmerica Dec. 30, 2019
BetMGM Feb. 25, 2020

The sportsbook apps that the state eventually expects to see at an unknown date: Fox Bet, PointsBet, William Hill, and Caesars Sportsbook.

BetMGM’s Planned Future Launches

MGM COO, Bill Hornbuckle, says BetMGM could very well be in eight states by year’s end. Besides their mobile offerings, they also operate retail sports betting. Three states are already planned for the near future: Pennsylvania, Colorado and Iowa. BetMGM has high future hopes for Michigan in particular.

Hornbuckle said he hopes the company will dominate in Michigan, where MGM operates MGM Grand Detroit.

About BetMGM

When legal sports betting first launched throughout the US, BetMGM operated under a different name, “PlayMGM.” PlayMGM was the 1.0 version of BetMGM we know today. Today, BetMGM offers many exciting and convenient features for its players, including early cash out, live in-game betting, odds boosts, and more payment options including PayPal and Skrill.

Voters Scheduled to Decide on New Casino in Terre Haute

Lawmakers in Indiana have been taking a closer look at the state’s current casino regulations. This week, voters in the state will decide on whether or not to allow a new casino in Terre Haute. Gambling fans here maintain that a casino will help to generate more revenue for the state and bring additional jobs to Terre Haute.

Terre Haute Indiana City Hall

It’s an exciting time in the state. Voters here are also deciding on who will fill dozens of mayoral offices throughout Indiana. Let’s look at everything that’s going on here.

Indiana Has Been Looking at Casino Expansion for Months

Officials in Indiana have been interested in opening new casinos for almost all of 2019. Back in February, lawmakers here first approved a bill to expand the state’s gambling industry. Senate Bill 552 quickly moved through the state’s legislative process with support from many residents and politicians.

Under this bill, a casino license can be granted in Terre Haute. Several companies have already expressed interest in opening a gambling venue here. Before this can happen, however, voters here will need to officially approve these plans.

Vigo County voters will decide whether or not to allow construction on a new casino in Terre Haute. If approved, this will become the 14th casino to open in the state of Indiana.

As we’ve already mentioned, two companies have expressed an interest in opening a casino here. Both companies are pledging to invest millions of dollars into this area.

It seems likely that these plans will be approved.

Pros and Cons of a New Casino in Terre Haute

A huge number of individuals have been actively promoting this new casino. Even state officials have been praising the benefits that this gambling will offer. Duke Bennett, mayor of Terre Haute, has been fighting hard for this casino to get approved.

“It’s always been about the economic development opportunity for me,” he said. “I did all I could to help bring that opportunity to the community… One of the most important parts of [the legislation] for me was the referendum language. We fought to keep that in there because I’ve felt it extremely important that the people of Vigo County decide whether they wanted a casino or not.”

According to Bennet, this new casino will help to bring more revenue to the state, add more jobs in Terre Haute, and bring in more tourism.

“When you look at the economic impact of not only the construction but also the jobs it will create and the revenue it will create for the city, we’re talking about near $10 million,” Bennett said. 

Of course, some residents here are concerned about the negative impact that a casino could have. Some believe it will lead to a rise in crime and gambling addiction.

We’ll need to wait and see how Vigo County voters decide on the new casino in Terre Haute.

Online Casino Gambling is Growing More Popular in Indiana

Indiana is home to many fantastic land-based gambling venues. Soon, even more of these establishments could open up. Unsurprisingly, more and more individuals here choosing to make their bets online.

There are a huge number of fantastic online casinos in IN right now. Most of them offer even more gambling options than the top land-based casino venues in the country. You can find many different table games and slots available online right now.

Most of these sites are extremely safe, as well. Word spreads fast in the online gambling market. Any sites caught doing anything shady are quickly blacklisted.

Online casinos remain unregulated in Indiana. Many believe that in time, the state government will begin to regulate and tax these sites. Doing so would likely earn the government millions in additional revenue every single month.

Very soon, we’ll know whether or not the new casino in Terre Haute will be approved. Stay tuned for more updates this week!

The Four Winds Casino in Indiana is Set to Expand

About a year and a half ago, the Pokagon Native American tribe opened a casino in South Bend, Indiana. It’s proved to be a massive success, bringing in millions of dollars for both the tribe and the state. This week, the Pokagon tribe announced that it’s ready to expand the Four Winds Casino in Indiana.

Four Winds Casino In Indiana

It’s exciting news for gambling fans in this state. The upcoming expansion will add a number of new features to this popular gambling establishment. Today, we’ll look at what’s coming here. First, let’s take a look at the current set of gambling laws in Indiana.

Indiana’s Gambling Laws, Explained

Indiana is known for having a fairly liberal set of gambling laws. Most traditional forms of gambling are allowed here, including casino gaming and the lottery. Today, there are 13 casinos located in this state, along with 2 “racinos.”

Many of the gambling venues in this state are riverboat casinos. In recent years, a few land-based casinos have also begun operating here. Most of these casino venues offer a huge range of different slots and table games.

Indiana has also begun regulating the sports betting industry. After PASPA was struck down in May of 2018, lawmakers here began pushing for legalized sports gambling options. A bill was approved in May of this year. On September 1st, several casinos here began officially offering sports betting odds to their patrons.

Politicians in this state recognize the huge revenue potential from the gambling industry. The Four Winds Casino in Indiana is generating serious revenue in its short time of operating. Now, the Pokagon tribe is set to expand this casino.

Four Winds Casino in Indiana is Getting Bigger

The Pokagon Native American tribe was initially hesitant to open their casino in South Bend. There were concerns over how profitable a gambling venue would be in this area. The tribe considered building a hotel with the casino, yet eventually scrapped the plans in order to gauge how successful it would be.

Now, after one and a half years of operating, the Four Winds Casino in Indiana is set to expand. Officials in the Pokagon tribe have confirmed that they are ready to open a hotel. According to these officials, the hotel will be luxurious, featuring 83 suites, a spa, convention center, bar, and an outdoor rooftop swimming pool.

The tribe is also working hard to expand the casino’s list of gambling options. They’ve reached out to the state, asking permission to begin offering traditional table games such as blackjack, as well as a land-based sportsbook.

Frank Freedman, CEO of the Four Winds Casino, commented on the move to add table games and sports betting options to the media this week.

“They’re two independent projects,” Freedman said. “This was probably two and a half years of planning. Table games and any other games that we don’t currently have just adds to our portfolio, so sure, it would help.”

We’ll need to wait and see how the state proceeds. Hopefully, this popular gambling venue can begin offering more options to its patrons.

Gambling Revenue Increases in Indiana

Many states around the country are beginning to embrace the gambling industry. Casino gambling and sports betting are bringing several states millions of dollars every single month. New Jersey, which now offers sports betting and casino gambling, earned $39.3 million in total gambling revenue in July from taxes.

Indiana is seeing some revenue increases of its own. In August, this state earned $35,955,839 in taxes from casinos. For most of 2019, gambling revenue has increased here.

Interestingly, not everyone is convinced that sports betting will bring in the big bucks here. Sports gambling is taxed at 9.5% in Indiana. Unfortunately, not all of the casinos in this state operate sportsbooks. It may be years before the sports betting industry begins bringing the state major revenue.

The Four Winds Casino in Indiana will soon expand. Whether or not lawmakers will allow the casino to offer more gambling options is unknown. Make sure to stay tuned for updates over the next few months!