|Internet betting is likely to expand the gambling industry as opposed to stealing business from traditional casinos in Las Vegas and other similar gaming markets, as many had feared. Confirmation comes from a survey of 3,000 gamblers worldwide.|
Jerry Asher, Vice President of marketing for the Internet gambling research firm the River City Group, commented, “Online casinos are not a current threat to Las Vegas casinos. Instead, they will be a new revenue source and a possible cross-marketing tool.” His St. Charles, Mo. based firm collaborates with Reymer and Associates in compiling the River city Gambler Monitor report.
Asher claimed gamblers who bet both on and off line tend to increase their betting budgets, rather than split the funds between the two activities. He added: “Online gambling is a completely different entertainment experience.”
The report is due be released this week. Asher was able to offer some of its contents during an Internet gambling panel discussion at the World Gaming Congress and Expo, which was held in Las Vegas. The release of the report coincides with the preparation of a few major land based casino operations to enter the cyber gambling industry. MGM Mirage, Littlewoods of Liverpool, England, and Sun International Hotels – which operates the Atlantis Resort and Casino in the Bahamas – have been granted licenses to enable them to operate land-based casinos from the Isle of Man, an island just off the coast of Great Britain.