Hollywood Pennsylvania Online Casino to Integrate with ESPN Bet

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  • Penn Entertainment partners with ESPN for ESPN Bet, impacting Hollywood Casino PA's integration, retaining brand identity, and enhancing user experience.
  • Unique Pennsylvania standing: Hollywood Casino boasts a standalone app and strategic advantage.
  • Seamless platform convergence to offer comprehensive gaming experience to users through integrated Hollywood Casino-ESPN Bet.

In a strategic move that has reverberated throughout the gambling industry, Penn Entertainment has forged a new sports betting partnership with ESPN, thereby giving rise to ESPN Bet. Amid this development, Hollywood Casino PA is set to undergo a transformation as it integrates with ESPN Bet. However, while this partnership marks a significant collaboration, it's noteworthy that the landscape in Pennsylvania differs from that of other states.

Ahead of the Curve: Hollywood Casino PA's Standalone App

Penn Entertainment's intention to align the Hollywood Casino PA brand with ESPN Bet brings an interesting dynamic into the Pennsylvania online gaming realm. Unique to Pennsylvania, Hollywood Casino already boasts a standalone app, positioning it as an innovator in the field. This puts the Keystone State ahead of the curve compared to its counterparts.

Convergence of Platforms: Merging Casino and Sportsbook

Penn Entertainment's CEO, Jay Snowden, conveyed that while ESPN Bet is launching a new sportsbook, there are no indications of an ESPN-branded online casino. Instead, the plan involves the integration of Hollywood Casino with the ESPN Bet sportsbook. This seamless convergence aims to enhance user experience and offer players a comprehensive gaming spectrum within a single platform.

Snowden explained the concept: "If you're in the state of Pennsylvania, for example, and you're within ESPN Bet betting on sports, you'll be able to wager by clicking on the Casino icon and go to Hollywood Casino seamlessly within the same app and platform the way that you can today between Barstool Sportsbook and Barstool iCasino."

Brand Strategy: Hollywood Casino's Identity

The decision to retain the Hollywood Casino brand instead of introducing an ESPN-branded online casino serves as a testament to Penn Entertainment's strategic vision.

The Hollywood Casino brand, already established in the Pennsylvania market, has a robust online presence bolstered by its association with four retail properties: Penn National Race Course, The Meadows, York (mini-casino), and Morgantown (mini-casino).

The success of Hollywood Casino is evident through its impressive performance. Hollywood at Penn National Race Course and Hollywood at The Meadows rank among the top 10 in slot revenue among retail PA casinos. In the Fiscal Year 2022/2023, The Meadows generated $169.2 million in slot revenue (fifth), and Penn National Race Course amassed $150.6 million (seventh).

Snowden highlighted the synergy between the digital and physical domains: "We've invested a lot of capital across the portfolio, and we're very proud of that Hollywood brand. We think that it creates a really nice linkage with digital online casinos. We think in markets where we've got land-based casinos, branded Hollywood, and it creates a really nice cross-sell opportunity, not just digitally but also on the brick-and-mortar side."

Pennsylvania's Online Casino Landscape

While Pennsylvania does not publicly disclose online casino revenue by operator, Hollywood Casino's contribution to the state's online gaming landscape is evident. Its parent company's license extends to multiple partnerships, including those with DraftKings, BetMGM, PointsBet, and Barstool. The state's yearly revenue of $426.1 million from these licenses reflects Hollywood Penn National's significant role.

Although precise rankings among operators are not readily available, Hollywood's partnerships with top operators like BetMGM and DraftKings contribute significantly to its revenue totals. While some operators, including FanDuel, Stardust, and Borgata, likely surpass Hollywood, the brand's collaboration with prominent players ensures its competitive standing.

Bet on the Brand: Penn Entertainment's Strategy

Penn Entertainment's commitment to expanding the Hollywood online casino in various states is a testament to its confidence in Pennsylvania's performance. The company's decision to focus on its own brand underscores a belief in the power of identity and customer loyalty. As Hollywood Casino ventures into this partnership with ESPN Bet, it remains a contender poised to navigate the evolving online gaming landscape.

Synergy in Strategy

The integration of Hollywood Casino PA with ESPN Bet marks a significant development in Pennsylvania's online gaming scene. The retention of the Hollywood Casino brand, its successful performance, and Penn Entertainment's strategic choices underscore a well-thought-out approach to maintaining customer engagement and satisfaction.

As the online gaming industry continues to evolve, Hollywood Casino's journey alongside ESPN Bet is one characterized by synergy and strategic innovation.

A huge sports fan; locally, many know me as the guy who does the PA for our high school football team on Friday nights. Having grown up in Michigan, I am a sports fan of all the Detroit teams, and at the college level, I love Michigan State sports. I have covered sports betting, iGaming and casino industry news for many well known websites.