- At the recent IndyFest 2021, Bill Hornbuckle, CEO of MGM Resorts, publicly endorsed iGaming in Nevada.
- Nevada has historically been against online casinos.
- However, iGaming access would have saved the state from a lot of lost revenue suffered during the pandemic casino closures.
LAS VEGAS – The topic of iGaming in Nevada was brought up at a recent IndyFest 2021 panel featuring big names in the gambling world.
Bill Hornbuckle, CEO of MGM Resorts, publicly embraced the idea of bringing online casinos to the Silver State. Local lawmakers have been opposed to the idea of online gambling in Nevada outside of mobile sportsbooks.
This is largely due to allowing Nevada to maintain the tourism and allure of Las Vegas casinos. However, with the many losses suffered during the COVID-19 lockdowns of 2020, legislators may see value in an online casino market.
iGaming In Sin City
Enjoyed speaking about the future of iGaming in Nevada at Indyfest 2021 with @BillMillerAGA, CEO of the American Gaming Association, moderated by @howardstutz and @RalstonReports. pic.twitter.com/BCV3AtmQaS
— Bill Hornbuckle (@billhornbuckle) October 5, 2021
Hornbuckle runs online casinos through MGM Resorts BetMGM product in New Jersey, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and West Virginia; the only states with regulated online casinos.
With first-hand experience with the success of online casinos, the MGM Resorts CEO brings an interesting perspective on the matter.
“If you look at what the opportunity could be, I look forward to just talking more about all of it,” said Hornbuckle. “It could be significant not only for the state, but for the industry and nationally, and potentially even on a global basis.”
Of course, there are detractors who want nothing to do with online casinos in Nevada due to how much money Las Vegas historically rakes in from tourism.
Many local casino owners are also opposed to bringing iGaming into the mix and actively advocate against passing any legislation that would regulate online casinos in Nevada.
Hornbuckle argued about the benefits of online gambling, discussing the billions of dollars in net gaming revenue MGM Resorts is expected to gain through sports betting and online casinos.
“It has not taken from our brick-and-mortar business,” said Hornbuckle.
Will Online Casinos Come To Nevada?
Despite Hornbuckle’s public endorsement, it is unlikely that lawmakers will be swayed to change the status quo where online gaming in Nevada is concerned.
The Silver State is the only top sports betting market that sees less than 90% of its betting revenue from online sportsbooks, showing the strong brick-and-mortar influence for gambling.
In addition, despite Nevada still suffering from the losses gathered during the pandemic, Las Vegas has begun to open up and is hoping to bounce back.
While for the foreseeable future, online casinos seem unlikely, if Nevada doesn’t see a major boom in success from its retail market, lawmakers may be convinced to bring online casinos into the discussion to help increase its gaming revenue stream.