Golden Nugget’s Pennsylvania Online Casino License Set for Approval

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Golden Nugget Online has received the green light from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) to launch its online casino in the Keystone State.

The PCGB unanimously passed the motion to grant a license on Wednesday.

Golden Nugget Online is owned by sports betting operator DraftKings. It split from original owners Landry’s Inc. in 2020, and then was bought by DraftKings for $450 million.

Pennsylvania is set to be the fourth state in which Golden Nugget Online operates, after New Jersey, Michigan, and West Virginia.

The new license will not be fully approved until all details are finalized over the next two months.

When it does launch, Golden Nugget Online will be looking to trade on the excellent brand recognition of its former owner’s chain of casino resorts across the US. That includes the Golden Nugget in Atlantic City (pictured) in Pennsylvania’s neighboring state of New Jersey.

The company was also the first online casino to launch in New Jersey in 2014.

Related: Golden Nugget Online Casino, reviewed and rated by our experts

The Journey to Approval

Golden Nugget’s journey to secure its place in Pennsylvania’s online casino market began in October 2022. That’s when it applied for two certificates as a Qualified Gaming Entity (QGE) in the state.

The applications, which were for online table games and online slots, came at a cost of around $4 million.

QGE licenses allow a casino operator to run online services in the state without partnering with a local operator. They’re more expensive, but successful online casinos then don’t have to split revenue.

With more than 500 games, Golden Nugget Online Casino in Pennsylvania has a chance to work wonders for the state in a variety of ways. First and foremost, it provides Pennsylvania online casino players with yet another option, which is always a positive. Perhaps more importantly, Golden Nugget will heavily chip in on the revenue front.

The Competitive Landscape

Despite the brand recognition and wealth of gaming experience the operator brings to the table, Golden Nugget will be well aware of the competitive legal online casino market in Pennsylvania.

As one of the early states to help push legal gaming legislation, Pennsylvania has had fully regulated online casino gaming since October 2017. Now, in 2023, more than 20 online casino apps are licensed in the state.

All of this shows how strong the Pennsylvania online casino market has been in recent times. The PGCB reported $167 million in online casino revenue in May 2023. That’s as part of an overall state gambling market of $479 million.

Some $100 million of that revenue came from online slots, of which Golden Nugget hosts 400.

However, as well as the $4 million Golden Nugget has paid so far for a Pennsylvania license, online operators in the state are taxed at a flat rate of 54% of revenues.

That benefited the state to the tune of $60.7 million in May alone.

Regardless of costs and competition, Golden Nugget Online is a veteran operator that has had a long time to work on its online casino offering. It now has the weight of giant newcomer DraftKings behind it.

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