West Virginia has become the 4th state to begin offering legal online casino gaming along with Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The honor of the first online casino to get underway went to DraftKings, who took their online sports betting licensing arrangement with West Virginia’s Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races to the next level by now offering their standalone online casino app (available in both Android and iOS formats) to the package.
West Virginia Lottery Director John Myers wrote in glowing terms of the state’s online casino launch with DraftKings;
“This is the culmination of a great deal of hard work and planning over the course of the last year, and we are looking forward to the licensing and approval of our other casinos and their affiliated providers when they are ready to do so.”
Online casino gaming became legal last year in West Virginia after the State’s lawmakers passed the Interactive Wagering Act. The law allows online casino gaming providers to offer sites and apps through partnerships with through the Mountain State’s four racinos and the Greenbrier Resort.
West Virginia’s Online Casino Industry to future proof the budget from further pandemic lockdowns
With the outcome of the global pandemic unknown, the introduction of legal online casinos to the state appears set to give the Mountain State a level of future proofing against any possible land-based casino shut downs.
Besides West Virginia, online casino gaming is legal in Delaware, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. While online gaming in those other legal states did not fully supplement the loss of revenue from the bricks-and-mortar casinos during the closures due to the pandemic health crisis, those legal online casino states still brought in millions of dollars of tax revenue and saw significant increases in traffic over the last few months.
DraftKings quick off the blocks in West Virginia
Even with the state regulator yet to approve any of DraftKings’ online slots games and the online casino only open for a limited number of games, DraftKings has nonetheless hit the ground running already recording better than expected results.
In the first six full days of operation through July 20, DraftKings took in more than $7.9 million in bets and the West Virginia state budget is already adding to its coffers, with more than $160k coming in. The small yield is expected to be a result of some very generous bonus cutting into the government take.
Eventually, the DraftKings online casino offering is expected to provide online bettors in West Virginia the following game library and services;
- Bets starting as low as $0.01
- A range of Live Dealer Casino Table Games
- Daily – Weekly – Monthly Bonuses and Promotions
- 60 Table Games including blackjack, roulette, baccarat, craps etc.
- A game library of over 300 online slots.
- Full-Service Customer Support.
DraftKings benefit from being first to market in West Virginia
On the back of its DFS and online sportsbook offerings in the Mountain State, DraftKings already enjoys great brand name recognition in West Virginia.
With no current competitors in the state’s online casino market, DraftKings has a captive market. The company’s online sportsbook account holders do not have to register new accounts to sign to play its West Virginia online casino games. All they have to do is sign-in to DraftKings with their existing log-in and password. What’s more, their bankroll can used for sports betting or online casino wagering.
Yes, more operators will come to West Virginia soon (FanDuel, Flutter and BetMGM among them) and online casino players will have more to choose from, however for the time being, DraftKings are setting the bar high for other competitors to follow.