Picture Credit: PXFuel
Every industry has been affected by coronavirus in one way or another. Some have been hit with a sledgehammer, while others have experienced an increase in sales. The casino industry sits somewhere in between, separated into businesses that are online and those that are offline.
We explain how hard coronavirus is hitting online casinos and how forcefully it’s attacking offline casinos.
The casino industry operates online and offline
Like many industries, the casino business operates both online and offline. This is important because coronavirus hits these two modes of operation in different ways.
Some companies are based solely online. 888 Casino is an example of a casino that has no land presence. 888 Casino is in a good position to make potential gains from coronavirus because lockdown doesn’t stop people from visiting websites.
Some casinos are only geared towards offline business. Colony Club is a mid-sized UK casino that has no online casino to support it. Colony Club needs people to visit it to be able to make money and will make losses from COVID-19.
And a number of casinos, such as Genting, have both a land and offline presence. This means Genting could see both gains and losses from coronavirus.
How hard have online casinos been hit by coronavirus?
Coronavirus has forced people into their homes.This has reduced their leisure options, as many of the things they could have done outside are either off limits or come with a threat to their health.
In this environment you’d expect online casinos to thrive, as people can use these from the safety of their homes.
However, it’s not only gamblers that have been forced indoors. Athletes were also kept inside. This reduces the number of things people can wager on, shrinking the betting options that online casinos can provide to their customers.
Despite many sports being paused, the reality is that people have continued to bet.
Other sports, such as table tennis, have increased in popularity, while some nations either didn’t stop sports altogether or were able to get their athletes back quickly. When you add this to the reality that online games have continued without disruption, it’s little surprise that coronavirus isn’t hitting the online casino industry very hard – indeed, many sites are thriving.
How hard have offline casinos been hit by coronavirus?
Coronavirus has forced land casinos to close.This has wiped out the customer base of land casinos, many of which depend almost entirely on having gamblers in their four walls to make any money. So, you’d be right to think that coronavirus is hitting offline casinos hard.
Even the biggest land casinos have felt the effects of COVID-19. Caesars, one of the biggest names in the casino industry, warned in March 2020 that it could experience daily losses of $9.3 million, as reported by Reuters.
While Caesars had $2.6 billion in liquidity at the time of that claim, no land casino can continue losing large amounts of money in long term – even ones that are global enterprises.
Many countries have re-opened casinos or have plans in place for them to allow gamblers back into their doors.
However, even if every land casino on the planet is allowed to re-open, there are a few things to keep in mind.
Many will already have gone out of business. Gamblers won’t be able to return in the same numbers. Some people won’t feel safe entering a casino until coronavirus disappears.
Put all these things together and it’s clear that the offline gambling industry is being hit very hard by coronavirus.
Recommended reading: The Future of Casino Gaming: What Are We Looking At?
It’s clear that there’s a split in how hard coronavirus is hitting the casino industry.
Online casinos have experienced some changes to what they can offer their gamblers, but circumstances have meant that more people are using them.
Offline casinos have been assaulted by COVID-19. First by forced closures, second by the cost of making changes to re-open, thirdly by people’s fear of re-entering them while the virus remains a reality.
If you’re thinking about visiting an offline casino then make sure you follow government guidelines when you do so. And if you’re planning on placing a bet at an online casino then always bet responsibly.