Summary: The Rivers Casino of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania has decided to withdraw their application for online gaming.
In Pennsylvania, licensed gaming operators in the state have been applying for the opportunity to offer online gaming. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board must receive an application and then approve an entity for online slots, table games and/or poker. So far, a few casinos have been approved, including the Sands and Valley Forge. Today, we learned that the Rivers Casino of Pittsburgh has decided to no longer apply for online gaming, having removed their application from consideration.
No Longer Interested
With the application withdrawn as of yesterday, the state now has three additional interactive gaming certificates available. The total number of open options now in the state is 10. The news of the application withdrawal is odd as no official comment has been made on the matter. The brand did speak to Online Poker Report, stating that the property is still interested in offering sports betting.
In a statement, a Rivers Casino spokesperson said that the company is taking time to explore online gaming options, set to actively pursue a sports betting license for land-based and mobile gambling. The owner of the Rivers Casino, Rush Street Gaming, is also the owner of the SugarHouse Casino, that will still offer online gaming. It seems that perhaps the SugarHouse venue will be the online gaming access point for the owner while the Rivers will be the sports betting hub.
For Rivers Casino to be able to offer sports betting and online casino gaming, they would have to pay $20 million total. The brand could save $10 million by sticking with the SugarHouse as their online gaming destination and then using the Rivers as their sports betting venue. It makes sense to be involved in both areas of gambling but not overwhelming so, spending a great deal of money on licensing for both properties.
More Licensing Available
For some time now, the state has been offering up the online licensing to entities located outside of Pennsylvania. Now with the Rivers withdrawing their application, even more outside entities could become involved. A total of 29 out of 39 have been claimed which now leaves four online poker licenses on offer, three online slot licenses and three online table game licenses.
The Gaming Control Board has announced that entities that are considered qualified for gaming will be able to seek the certificates that are available by filing a petition starting on October 15th. Such operators will have until October 31st to complete the petition process. Companies do not have to have a presence in the state to be considered.
Once the petition process has ended, the board will then choose entities at random to be able to offer online gaming. Now with more licenses up for grabs, there is more potential for outside entities to be able to operate in the state via online slots, table games and poker.
Over the next few weeks, we should see companies stepping forward and vying for the available licensing. Will it be companies that are based in other states? Or will we see operators from other regions, such as Europe, hoping to get started in Pennsylvania?
Players are ready to be able to enjoy online casino and poker games from their home or on the go in the state. Since the gaming reform package was passed last fall, allowing online gaming to be legalized in the state, players have been waiting in anticipation for the opportunity to wager online for real money. Hopefully, the operators who have licensing will begin to offer services shortly.