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The regulated gaming sites operating in the tiny state of Delaware took in $28,589 in online poker rake and fees in December, a 9.6% drop from the $31,610 collected the month before.

The figures were recently released by theDelaware State Lottery, revealing the breakdown in ipoker revenue among the state’s three operators – Harrington Raceway ($4,999),Dover Downs ($7,625) and Delaware Park($15,964).

Of the 14 months recorded since The First State launched their online poker and gambling regime in November 2013, last month was thethird worst ever for online poker revenue. December 2014 was better only than the $28,465 obtained in revenue in October and $25,607 in June.

Dismal year-over-year numbers

Delaware’s best month in terms of Internet poker rake and fees was December 2013 when $106,922 was collected from online poker players in the state. That was Delaware’s first entire month accepting online wagers after officially launching during the previous month.

A comparison of December 2014 to the same month in 2013 shows a massive 73% decline in online poker revenue. Internet poker players turned out in decent numbers upon launching considering Delaware’s population of less than 1 million, but those same players are obviously no longer playing one year later.

The reason for turning their backs on regulated online poker? All signs point to lack of liquidity, as it’s hard to get enough games going and continue running under an intrastate ipoker model in one of the nation’s smallest states.

MSIGA action please

It’s apparent that Delaware would greatly benefit from the Multi State Internet Gaming Agreement (MSIGA) that was signed into effect last February with Nevada but has yet to be put into play. Those Delawareans who were playing online poker a year ago may return – at least some of them – once player pools are shared with the Silver State.

WSOP.com in Nevada averages 150 cash players, according to recent calculations offered byPokerScout.com. The well-known site has a near monopoly in Nevada after the exit by Ultimate Poker in November, leaving WSOP.com to battle only with the handful of players found at Real Gaming for market share.

While Delaware desperately needs the interstate launch with Nevada to occur post-haste before more Delaware players turn away from online poker, Nevada could use the boost in traffic that shared pools would provide as well. The time table for such a launch remains uncertain, as most expected it to happen in 2014.

Also anticipated in the future is New Jersey going all-in on the MSIGA. Discussions to that effect have taken place, but nothing has as of yet been solidified.

Delaware online gambling tumbles 4.5%

It wasn’t only online poker that took a dive in revenue in December when compared to November totals. Online gambling in general – which includes poker, video lottery and casino games – saw the three regulated operators take in $169,606 last month.

That was a 4.5 % decrease from November’s $177,532. The best month ever was last April when $240,762 was collected in revenue.

Also decreasing in December 2014 were the number of new player signups. That’s likely par for the course in a small state like Delaware, as there remains a limited populace to draw from. New registrations totaled 256 last month, 17% off the pace of the 308 who created accounts in November.

 

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Charles Rettmuller

Charles has been an avid poker player for a number of years, both live and online. He holds a degree in journalism and previously worked as a reporter for a Chicago-based newspaper. Charles joined the PokerUpdate team in early 2012 and writes daily news articles for the site.

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