Borgata Casino starts $11m sportsbook; Ocean Resort Casino changing owners

After the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the 1992 federal ban on sports betting this past spring, Atlantic City’s top casino said it would take wagers from the first day state regulators allow it, declaring in May, 2018, that the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa was “uniquely prepared” to start operations given that it was the iconic Boardwalk City’s only casino with an existing race book.

State’s first book:

Making good on that promise, just three days after New Jersey Governor, Phil Murphy, signed a bill (A4111) allowing licensed casinos to establish legal sports books, the city’s reigning market revenue leader debuted The Race & Sportsbook on June 14, 2018.

The MGM Resorts International property has now revealed that next week it is to begin work on an $11 million expansion of its sports book, which will be integrated with what the casino is calling a “destination bar,” according to the Associated Press.

Temporary digs:

The current sports betting operation has been running out of a temporary space at the casino. The new sports betting facility will be larger as will the bar and is expected to be ready for business by this summer.

Commenting on the new race and sportsbook, President and Chief Operating Officer for Borgata, Marcus Glover said…

The Borgata is “proud to have been at the forefront of legalized sports betting in New Jersey and look forward to advancing our product with an innovative gaming and entertainment experience for our guests to enjoy.”

Resorts Casino Hotel and DraftKings opened their 5,000 square foot permanent sportsbook on November 20, 2018, while Ocean Resort Casino and Golden Nugget also have permanent books opened. Including Borgata, the sportsbooks at Bally’s Atlantic City, Harrah’s Resort Atlantic City and Tropicana Atlantic City are all temporary until permanent lounges are constructed.

New Jersey’s sports betting picture:

The Garden State has nine sportsbooks, including two at the state’s major racetracks, including Monmouth Park Sports Book by William Hill and Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment FanDuel Sportsbook, and eight online/mobile sports betting platforms.

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Since its inceptio 7BALL n in June this year through November 30, $928,116,793 (pdf) worth of bets have been made in New Jersey (on-site and internet combined). The state’s Division of Gaming Enforcement is due to announce the statistics for December this coming week.

While Atlantic City Casino revenue was up 20 percent in November, not every casino is doing well.

More than rumors:

Last Month, it was revealed that Ocean Resort Casino, which, along with the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino opened to much fanfare in June this year, is reportedly being sued for $10 million by a former partner at the property’s HQ2 club.

Recent grumblings of a possible sale now appear to be true as a Thursday report informs that the former Revel is being acquired by an outside company.

According to Action News 6 WPVI-TV, the new owner, which current owner Bruce Deifik (pictured) declined to identify, would make a $70 million investment in the casino and assume majority ownership. If all goes according to plan, the Colorado-based developer and his family will reportedly retain a small, non-controlling ownership interest in the Boardwalk property, as reported by the news agency.