Howard Glaser

Demand for brick and mortar gambling has acutely risen with the popularity of iGaming and online sports betting soaring during the pandemic, say experts in the sector. Customers are driving a gaming expansion across the United States, especially in conservative states.

A meeting organised by the National Council of Legislators from Gaming States came to the conclusion that there is currently a boom happening, brought on by the pandemic.

Experts postulated last year that land-based gaming was coming to an end with the advent of iGaming with over 900 casinos closing across the country at the beginning of the pandemic. Most casinos have just recently reopened their doors.

When asked about the rumours of the death of land-based casinos, Howard Glaser, the global head of government affairs and special initiatives for Scientific Games, told Sigma.com.mt that “the answer is not only that they have come back, but that they have come back stronger than ever”. Mr Glaser continued to state how well the gambling industry is doing in 2021.

“We saw a significant revenue drop in 2020 and what we’ve seen in the first quarter is not just breaking the record of last year. It’s beating all-time records. There’s record revenue in Maryland and beating pre-pandemic records in Indiana and Pennsylvania. You can look at almost every state. This is clearly not just pent-up demand but an ongoing desire for that social experience that people took for granted when the pandemic was upon them. They appreciated that one could go and have an enjoyable time in a place with people.”

Mr Glaser predicts that revenue growth and the recovery of the economy is driving the gaming expansion.

iGaming is still on the rise in the United States as more states continue to legalise online gambling.

States such as Delaware, New Jersey, Mississippi, West Virginia, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Arkansas, New York, Iowa, Oregon, Indiana, New Hampshire, Illinois, Michigan, Montana, Colorado, Washington D.C, Tennessee, Virginia and North Carolina all allow some form of gambling to take place and look likely to regulate further.

Featured Image: LinkedIn

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