It's been a busy week in the casino world with key headlines popping up both stateside and overseas. Here is a look at the casino news that we've been tracking, starting in Pennsylvania where they continue to make a push to legalize online gambling.
Senate Bill Pushes Online Gaming Forward In Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania has long been trying to figure out a way to get into the online casino game and it looks like there has been some traction. A bill was put forth recently to further the cause via land-based casinos. Senate Bill 524 would allow the existing brick-and-mortar casinos, of which Pennsylvania has 12, to offer online betting to their players as part of an effort for the state to jumpstart its economy. This is one of three online gambling bills that are on the table in Pennsylvania.
The state is the second-biggest market for gambling in the United States but bills have stalled out in recent years. It has been estimated that online gambling would bring in about $300 million in revenue to Pennsylvania and with the government struggling to find funds (see: Philadelphia's soda tax), getting a piece of the $300 million could solve a lot of problems.
Turning Stone Unveils Online Gaming App
Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, New York, is moving with the times as they have released an app that is focused on online gaming. Their online casino will have more than 50 slot machines for their players to access along with table games. Customers can use it right on their desktop, laptop, phone or tablet. Players will earn points and they can redeem their Turning Stone Reward points at the casino or any casino that is run by Nation Enterprises. There are all sorts of bonuses and prizes for them, so Turning Stone is trying to entice them to check it out.
Turning Stone realizes that players, through no fault of the casinos, are simply staying home to play more because it's easier and more convenient, so this app should help them recoup some of the money they could be losing from players not going out. And while they didn't have an option to access these customers before, now they can generate some revenue whether the players are on site or not.
Poland Pushes Out Gambling
Finally, it is off to Poland, where there has been a recent exodus of operators from the industry. The government has put forth the Gambling Act, which starts on April 1. The country's operators are expecting regulations to get a lot tougher for them, namely a 12% wagering turnover tax that will significantly cut into their profits. There are many operators that are going to stay and see how things go but bet365 is being proactive as they have gotten out of Poland. That's a huge exit as bet365 is known as a leader in online betting and many expect other companies to follow suit. If a company such as bet365 feels as though they can't operate under those circumstances, it is surely going to hurt the little guys even more so.