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Dan Ippolito

As Casino City's associate editor, Dan produces and edits all of our weekly newsletters, and he writes about the gaming industry for our websites and the GPWA Times Magazine. Dan graduated from Marist College in 2017 with a degree in Communications and a concentration in Sports.

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Casino City’s Friday Five: Sportsbooks closing, sportsbooks opening edition

18 Aug 2023

By Dan Ippolito
Fresh off PENN Entertainment’s announcement to launch ESPN Bet this fall, the U.S. is stilling buzzing with news from the sports betting industry with WynnBET shutting down in eight states and Fanatics finally launching its highly anticipated app. Elsewhere, a new millionaire was minted at a Florida casino last weekend, U.S. gaming revenue continues to break records, Circa Resort & Casino in Las Vegas expanded its football offerings, and Sin City is set for a legendary Labor Day Weekend.

Let’s start this off with a seven-figure win:

5. $1 million jackpot hit at Seminole Casino Coconut Creek
A Florida resident hit a jackpot of $1,027,475 on a High-Limit Dragon Link slot machine on Sunday, 13 August. This is the third jackpot of over $1 million hit on a Dragon Link slot machine at Seminole Casino Coconut Creek in less than a month.

There have been over $530 million in jackpots won at the Florida casino since January of this year, that is a total jackpot average payout of over $2 million per day.

4. Circa Las Vegas sportsbook expands football offerings
Circa Resort & Casino – home to the world’s largest sportsbook – is ready to kick off the NFL season with parties, new offerings, sports betting contests and more.

The adults-only downtown Las Vegas casino-resort expanded its sportsbook’s footprint with 20 new seats, bringing the viewing capacity to over 1,000. Featuring a 78-million-pixel screen and three stories, the book will also debut Circa Sports Suites that are available to reserve on Saturday and Sunday game days.

Circa Sports is breaking and setting its own record with a $14 million, no rake guaranteed payout, marking the highest prize purse ever for an NFL contest with Circa Million V and Circa Survivor. Circa Million returns with a $6 million guarantee, while Circa Survivor’s pool has been raised to $8 million.

3. US gaming revenue soars in Q2 2023
U.S. commercial gaming continued its run of consecutive quarterly revenue growth in the second quarter, hitting a record of $16.07 billion, according to the American Gaming Association’s Commercial Gaming Revenue Tracker. The total outpaced Q2 2022 by 8.1% and marked the 10th consecutive quarter of annual growth for the commercial gaming industry.

While land-based gaming continues to account for more than three-quarters of total commercial revenue, the industry’s year-over-year growth is being driven by the online sports betting and iGaming sectors.

Q2 revenue from land-based slots, table games and retail sports betting totaled $12.38 billion, a slight increase (+0.9%) compared to the previous year. Meanwhile, revenue from online gaming rose 43.1% year-over-year in Q2 to $3.68 billion.

Online casino gaming tied Q1 for its highest-grossing quarter ever, generating $1.48 billion in revenue, up 22.5% over Q2 2022.

2. Las Vegas filled with Labor Day Weekend entertainment
From headlining residencies to superstar-studded concerts, there’s a show for everyone in Las Vegas this Labor Day Weekend. Below are just a few examples of what Sin City will have to offer:

- Adele continues her residency at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace on Friday and Saturday, 1-2 September.
- Drake teams up with 21 Savage for two shows at T-Mobile Arena on Friday and Saturday, 1-2 September.
- Dillon Francis and Cody Ko (Friday, 1 September), Marshmello (2 Saturday, September) and Gryffin (Sunday, 3 September) are set to perform at Encore Beach Club at Wynn Las Vegas.
- Ventriloquist comedian Jeff Dunham is back with his funny friends at Bakkt Theater at Planet Hollywood Las Vegas on Sunday, 3 September.

1. WynnBET to halt sports betting operations in eight states
Wynn Resorts announced last Friday its decision to close its online sports betting and iGaming platform, WynnBET, in certain jurisdictions.

The company will seek to cease operations in Arizona, Colorado, Indiana, Louisiana, New Jersey, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia as soon as possible. Operations in Nevada and Massachusetts will continue unaffected and operations in New York and Michigan remain under review.

“In light of the continued requirement for outsized marketing spend through user acquisition and promotions in online sports betting, we believe there are higher and better uses of capital deployment for Wynn Resorts shareholders,” said Julie Cameron-Doe, Chief Financial Officer of Wynn Resorts.

The saying is, “when one door closes, another one opens.” That is kind of what happened this week for sportsbooks. As WynnBET prepares to close in eight states, Fanatics launched its mobile sportsbook app in Maryland, Massachusetts, Ohio and Tennessee, following six months of beta testing.
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