Foreword: Due to isolation and quarantine, millions of people all over the world are looking for ways to entertain themselves, which is proving to be a boon for the online gaming industry. Statista research indicates that the revenues generated through the global media and entertainment market are on the rise. This has accelerated in 2020, owing to the coronavirus pandemic. In 2015 industry was valued at $1.72 trillion, and is expected to rise rapidly towards $2.2 trillion by 2021. Online gaming activity comprises a sizeable component of this industry. Among the many different categories of online gaming are MMORPG games, mobile games, sports betting online, and online casino games.
How Big Will the Bounce from Coronavirus Be on The Online Gaming Industry?
The listing of New Jersey’s legal online casino sites is certainly positioned well to benefit from people having more free time. Even at a modest rate of increase, a huge uptick in player numbers has the potential to shift aggregate demand for online casino games to a new level.
The impact of such activity will naturally showcase the games, platforms, software, and promotions to a much broader gaming audience which will then be familiar with these products in the post-pandemic economy. By deduction, the stay-at-home orders, quarantines, and the switch to virtual entertainment in all its forms is a big advantage to the gaming industry.
One such operator – an industry-leading aficionado – 888 reported unprecedented casino and poker growth during the coronavirus pandemic. A report issued by the company on March 24, revealed that from all of the company’s verticals, the casino has generated the most customer activity. On the other hand, the sports vertical has been hit hard from the cancellation of all sporting events around the world. Another reason 888Casino is on the rise is because of its high level of security which is crucial for players depositing money at this sensitive time.
A report commissioned by an association of the online gaming industry, iDEA Growth, titled ‘The Economic Impact Of New Jersey Online Gambling’ was released in December 2019. This comprehensive study lays the foundation upon which further analysis of the online gaming industry vis-a-vis the impact caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Monthly iGaming Gross Gambling Revenue (GGR) in New Jersey increased rapidly from inception in November 2013 through September 2019.
The data is significant since it presents irrefutable evidence regarding the burgeoning popularity of online gaming in the United States, notably New Jersey. While other states including Nevada, Delaware, and Pennsylvania are accounted for, they pale in comparison to the revenues generated in the Garden State.
Massive Spike in GGR and Solid CAGR for Online Gaming Industry
These studies reveal that Gross Gambling Revenue (GGR) has increased at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) in New Jersey of 24.8%, reaching $299.1 million in 2018 and $339 million through September 2019. By the end of the year, the New Jersey figure topped out in the region of $482,695,308 million in net gaming revenue. The coronavirus pandemic has brought the global economy to a virtual standstill, shuttering almost every industry across the planet, decimating the travel and tourism industry, the sports betting industry, and a veritable glut of industries across the board.
Double-digit gains for TV shows, online viewing networks, online gaming activity and the like are commonplace. An Op-Ed by Ian Sherr on CNET (Lots of people are playing video games during coronavirus lockdowns March 30, 2020) presents irrefutable evidence of the crush of players on video gaming platforms popular games like Call of Duty: War Zone, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, and Fortnight: Battle Royal has come into their own during the coronavirus pandemic. This has become a global trend and is likely to last for several months until the quarantine and stay-at-home orders start to have the desired effect.
It’s still too early to tell precisely how big of an impact the stay-at-home orders will have on online gaming revenues. Preliminary reports indicate 2020 could prove to be one of the biggest years on record for online casino gaming in New Jersey.