Independent gaming licensees will be permitted to operate multiple skins (customer-facing branded websites) under Pennsylvania’s latest iGaming regulations.
With this decision, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has overcome its first major hurdle concerning regulation of online gaming within its borders. It’s a choice that follows New Jersey’s lead in fostering a lively and competitive online market for casino games.
The state legalized online gaming in October, but the final bill left many regulatory details up in the air. Chief among them was the question of how many skins each brand would be permitted to operate. Since it will cost eight figures to obtain an online gaming license, smaller operators who could only afford one would have no room to innovate.
In the end, Pennsylvania has looked to its neighbor to the east. In New Jersey, each operator is restricted to five distinct online gaming brands, but it has no limit on skins. That means operators are free to experiment with different looks and user experiences. The result has been a gaming environment that nets in excess of $20 million in revenue every month.
By late March, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board began outlining the specifics of how it would regulate online gaming through temporary specifications, but still hadn’t mentioned its most contentious concern. Because limits on skins can have such an enormous effect on how online gaming looks to gamers—and therefore can affect whether operators succeed, casinos have been watching to see what the state would decide on this matter with interest.
This latest decision, to allow online gaming licensees to operate multiple skins, ought to be viewed as a win for casinos and gamers alike. You only need to look to New Jersey to see that a gaming environment with multiple skins leads to an open and competitive market.
With this major decision made, it is expected that the Board will begin accepting applications from both platform providers and casinos within the next month.