Churchill Downs Aiming For Online Success

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The operators of the famous Churchill Downs racetrack in Kentucky have brought forward the launch date for their online New Jersey betting operation.

Churchill Downs Incorporated announced that it would be launching its mobile casino and sports betting operation in New Jersey in the fourth quarter of 2018, after initially predicting a start date in the first quarter of 2019. At the same time, the company has also acquired a majority stake in the Illinois Rivers Casino Des Plaines, as it aims to take advantage of online opportunities. 

The change in plans was announced as part of the company’s third quarter report. According to the CEO of Churchill Downs, Bill Carstanjen, they were still waiting to be granted a licence to offer online gambling in New Jersey, where they will be operating through a deal with Atlantic City’s successful online casino platform, the Golden Nugget.

Increase in revenue

Churchill Downs was able to record a 12 percent revenue increase during the third quarter of 2018, despite a decline in their proceeds from racing, thanks to a rise in casino gaming income. Overall revenue during the quarter was $221.3m, with $105m of that total coming from casino gambling.

As well as preparing for its launch in New Jersey, Churchill Downs is also making an entry into the New York and Colorado markets, following a deal struck with Saratoga Casino Holdings and has already started taking bets in the state of Mississippi via sportsbooks at two casinos.

The purchase of a 50.1 percent stake in the Rivers Des Plaines, which will continue to be operated by Rush Street Gaming, establishes a Churchill Downs presence in Illinois and the company is also believed to be targeting a launch in Pennsylvania, as they aim to increase their share of the rapidly growing sports betting market in the US.

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