Last week the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) announced that Rivers Casino withdrew its application for online gambling. The news comes as a surprise since the Rivers Casino was one of the first to apply for online poker, slots, and table games.
Since late 2017, Pennsylvania has slowly been preparing to launch online casino and poker gaming. The state approved the option last year and the licensing process has been underway for the past few months. Existing Pennsylvania casinos, including Rivers Casino, had first dibs at applying for licensing.
What Was The Reason Behind Their Decision?
A comment from the casino regarding the withdrawal stated that they plan on providing online gaming in the state but are taking more time to “explore the various options for doing so”. The casino also stated that they are going to pursue a sports betting certificate and launch both land-based and mobile sports betting with approval.
The Rivers Casino applied for all three interactive gaming certificates with the PA Gaming Control Board, so now, three more licenses are available. The withdrawal of the Rivers application comes at the same times as the Sands Bethlehem and Valley Forge were approved for online gaming licensing.
A Closer Look At The Rivers Casino
The Rivers Casino owner is Rush Street Gaming, an entity that also owns the SugarHouse Casino, a venue located in Philadelphia. The SugarHouse will be offering online gambling, a brand that is already actively offering online casino gaming in New Jersey, operating under the Golden Nugget Casino’s license.
Pennsylvania Online Casino Licenses
Now that the Rivers Casino withdrew their application, Pennsylvania has a total of 10 interactive gaming licenses up for grabs. There are three each within the online slot and table game categories while online poker has four licenses available.
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board opened up the licensing process to anyone located outside the state a short time ago, which means that anyone can apply for licensing. However, the board stated that applicants will need to be Qualified Gaming Entities to be considered. It will be interesting to see which, if any, outside operators apply for licensing and if they are approved.