MGM and GVC to Partner on New Jersey Online Gambling

Major US-based casino-entertainment company MGM Resorts International and international online-gambling giant GVC Holdings PLC have announced a partnership through which online casino and poker games will be offered to New Jersey residents via MGM Resorts' PlayMGM brand.

The deal strengthens the ongoing relationship between MGM Resorts and GVC in New Jersey. GVC entered MGM's partnership sphere in the autumn of 2015 when GVC won a bidding war with, which at the time had an ongoing relationship with the MGM Resorts-owned Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa for its online sites. MGM Resorts initially remained noncommittal regarding its future association with GVC, but the business relationship between the two has solidified over the past year and a half.

The previous deals involving the Borg will continue unchanged, as that casino's online sites, collectively, remain a dominant force amid the New Jersey online-gambling scene. What this latest deal allows for is the launching of a new online brand in a jurisdiction where the “MGM” name has little previous brand presence, unlike in Las Vegas. MGM Resorts International's prominent Strip properties include but are not limited to the Bellagio, MGM Grand Las Vegas, Luxor, Mirage, and Mandalay Bay, with the MGM corporate linkage prominent at several of those properties..

Regarding PlayMGM, current plans call for the online site to be launched in New Jersey sometime later in 2017. GVC will provide software and support services for the new site, just as it does for the existing Borgata-licensed offerings.

According to the announcement, the upcoming New Jersey offerings will mark the first time the MGM brand will be associated with real-money online casino and poker offerings. MGM currently does not offer online poker in Nevada, though a successful rollout in New Jersey might help tip the political balance in the ongoing legalization debate over online gambling in the US.

The PlayMGM New Jersey site will sit on the latest version of GVC's gaming platform. The site will be available for both desktop and mobile play. The site promises to include more than 300 casino games – most of which will be slots titles – in addition to other table games and “multiple variants of tournament and cash play poker.”

MGM and GVC has also confirmed that third-party offerings will be included in the site. GVC already has a deal with NYX Gaming to offer that company's games in New Jersey. Those titles are already available via MGM's Borgata sites, and will likely appear quickly on the PlayMGM site as well. GVC promises other third-party offerings will also be integrated within the PlayMGM site.

The deal also helps GVG continue its expanding presence across the entire online-gambling spectrum. Once known only as a business-to-business provider, GVC first made a B2C splash with its acquisition of SportingBet in 2013. The 2015 acquisition, in which GVC acquired and quickly improved that firm's prognosis, was an even larger success story.

The deal is also likely to get quick approval from the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE), which according to state code must sign off on all operational transactions. Both MGM Resorts International and GVC Holdings are existing licensees in good standing with the DGE, meaning, among other things, that the PlayMGM site will likely enjoy a testing fast-track to live, real-money play.

"We are delighted to extend our relationship with MGM Resorts and to be launching casino and poker under the playMGM brand in New Jersey," said GVC's Chief Operating Officer Shay Segev. "MGM Resorts is quite simply one of the biggest and best names in the business, and we look forward to working with them for many years to come."

"This is a historic moment for MGM Resorts to be launching real money online casino and poker under the MGM brand for the first time," said Corey Sanders, Chief Operating Officer of MGM Resorts. "GVC has been a first-rate partner for us, and we are excited about the possibilities of extending that partnership as regulated markets open up in the U.S."