IGC: Strong Casino Industry Rebound Despite Restrictions

The Indiana Gaming Commission (IGC) released its latest monthly report, revealing July was the strongest month for the state’s sports betting market since February. After a three-month period of shutdown for the casinos, total sports wagering in the Hoosier State since its launch in September 2019 exceeded $1 billion in July.

Casinos in Indiana which were ordered to close March 16 and only resumed operations, June 15, recorded nearly identical win or revenue after payouts during their first full month of operation, despite the restrictions related to the number of slot machines and table game seats, the comprehensive financial report by the IGC showed.

Strong Recovery for the Industry

As part of the limit imposed on capacity, every other slot machine was switched off and table games were reduced to 3 or 4 players, yet statewide casino $175.8 million win was just $10.1 million less than the July 2019 figure, when there was no coronavirus in sight.

Besides the capacity restrictions, there were general inconveniences for patrons in place, as they had to be subjected to body temperature checks and other types of screening prior to entering the gaming facilities, as well as wear a face-covering mask once inside.

“We’re very pleased with the July results. We continue to work very hard on providing a great entertainment escape for our guests, and over the last several weeks we continue to find ways to add to the experience.”

Dan Nita, Regional President, Caesars Entertainment Inc.

The Horseshoe Casino in Hammond is spearing the list of all 13 state-regulated casinos, posting a $30.5 million win in July, according to the official data from the IGC. The July 2020 win figure for the casino is nearly identical with the July 2019 one, and Horseshoe’s General Manager Dan Nita explained the casino managed to re-arrange its floor in compliance with the restrictions.

Spreading slot machines across in new configurations, as well as repurposing the temporarily closed poker room to accommodate additional slots were some of the approaches to ensure availability for the games that were most in-demand.

“Where we were from June 15 to where we are almost two months later, we’ve definitely learned a lot along the way, and we definitely are trying to provide a great entertainment experience for our guests.”

Dan Nita, Regional President, Caesars Entertainment Inc.

Besides making the most within the imposed restrictions, the general manager of the casino pointed out the gaming venue had seen a lot of interest from new players who were seeking to substitute excitement from a professional sporting event, a movie or any other entertainment venue that was not available under the coronavirus-induced limitations.

Sports wagering in the state posted $70.9 million in July, pushing the total number to above $1 billion in less than a year. According to analysts, were it not for the coronavirus outbreak impact, the casino industry handle in the state would have topped $2 billion already.

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