Having vowed never to re-enter Atlantic City and brandishing it “the enemy”, Steve Wynn knows that online gaming is on a wave of expansion in the US and wants back in. Wynn is part of an application to state regulators for a waiver needed to begin internet operations.
Unlike his counterpart Sheldon Adelson, who is fighting against an online gaming market that could eat into land-based profits, Wynn recognises potential in the emergent sector. He filed a joint application on January 10 with All American Poker Network (AAPN) and Caesars Entertainment. Last year, Wynn announced an agreement to host online gaming operations at Caesars Atlantic City and both companies are working alongside Gibraltar-based online provider 888 Holdings.
New Jersey, which last year became the first US state to launch full online casinos, is pinning its hopes on the new sector to revitalise the industry. Operators must have agreements in place with bricks-and-mortar casinos, with servers all hosted in Atlantic City. Not among the original applicants, Wynn is seeking a waiver by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement.
“As the online business rolls out on a state-by-state basis, everyone will need to partner with someone,” remarked Itai Frieberger, 888 Holdings COO. “You’ll find very strong partnerships in some cases with competitors in order to get a license.”
Wynn and Caesars are engaged in a separate battle for the sole casino license in Boston. Wynn is planning to develop a futuristic resort on the famed Mystic River waterfront, while Caesars plans to build at the Suffolk Downs racetrack. Each with a large presence in Las Vegas, both companies also fight for market share.
“It’s known that we’re giving Wynn Interactive the ability to use our license in New Jersey,” informed Seth Palansky, a spokesman for Caesars Interactive. “Obviously, we don’t own our own software, and it gives them the ability to open in New Jersey.”
Wynn Resorts – Website: WynnResorts.com
CIE – Website: CaesarsInteractive