States that draw revenue from casinos should regulate online gambling, as online has a complementary, not cannibalistic, effect on land-based gambling.
That’s one takeaway from a recently published study entitled “Consumer spending in the gaming industry: evidence of complementary demand in casino and online venues” penned by gambling experts Kahlil S. Philander, Brett Abarbanel and Toni Repetti for International Gambling Studies. The authors advise that “US operators should recognize the positive value that online gambling can have with relation to their online operations,” suggesting that operators are best served integrating online gambling as part of their overall offering, as opposed to “resisting change.”
Philander, Aberbanel and Repetti’s findings are the latest in what has become a string of mounting evidence that online gambling has a complementary relationship with offline gambling:
- In February 2014, President and CEO of Boyd Gaming Kevin Smith stated in a press release that “about 85 percent of our online players have not had rated play at Borgata in at least two years, showing there is little overlap with our land-based business.”
- David Satz, senior vice president of government relations and development for Caesars Entertainment Corp., echoed these sentiments several months later, stating “91% of the players that we have derived in our New Jersey experience are customers who we did not know” and of the remainder “that we did know, we’ve actually seen increased play and increased visitation to our sites.”
- A 2012 research study by Philander and Fiedler focused on online poker in North America found that “the presence of online poker may increase demand of offline gambling overall.”