Evolution to Develop $75M Gaming Campus, Revolutionizing Atlantic City’s iGaming Landscape

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In an ambitious stride towards expanding its frontier, Evolution, a leading entity in the digital gaming sphere, is poised to construct a sprawling $75 million campus in the heart of Atlantic City. Set to revolutionize New Jersey’s online gaming landscape, this venture has been conceived to operate live dealer casino games, primed to service iGaming enterprises across the state.

A rendering of the proposed studio campus divulges the scale and ambition of Evolution’s vision. The prominent Swedish company, known for its supremacy in the live dealer online casino table games domain in the United States, collaborates with a wide spectrum of online casino platforms in New Jersey under business-to-business partnerships. A foray into a dedicated campus would be Evolution’s next big leap.

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Presently, Evolution operates live studios ensconced in the Hard Rock, Ocean Casino Resort, and Tropicana. Within these walls, dealers deftly facilitate a cornucopia of table games for remote internet betting aficionados. Evolution’s sights, however, are set on a dedicated studio at 2301 Fairmont Avenue. As it currently stands, this property is but a paved parking lot.

For their vision to turn into brick and mortar, Evolution is seeking approval from the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA), a governmental body that supervises land-use planning and construction measures within the Atlantic City Tourism District. Interestingly, the property that Evolution has set its eyes on, is in fact, owned by the CRDA.

Time is ripe for change though. With Cooper Levenson, a famed law firm, and esteemed partner, Lloyd D. Levenson, representing Evolution’s project, the wheels are newly in motion. Levenson is renowned as a champion of the Atlantic City gaming industry and the driving force behind the Lloyd D. Levenson Institute of Gaming, Hospitality, and Tourism (LIGHT) at Stockton University.

Levenson paints a promising picture for the city — asserting that although Evolution currently employs about 850 employees in Atlantic City, a larger workforce can be harvested. The obstacle of limited space at the three casino resorts can now be mitigated with the construction of the dedicated campus. Evolution anticipates its staff to burgeon to around 2,000 employees by 2029 if the deal with CRDA materializes.

Online gaming law in New Jersey mandates that live dealer operations only be conducted from within Atlantic City. This was a conscious strategy to mitigate the economic impact of online gambling on Atlantic City. As such, with Evolution’s groundbreaking plan, the potential for the state’s economic progress could increase exponentially. New Jersey is one of just seven states with legalized online casino gambling, alongside Connecticut, Delaware, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and West Virginia.

The advent of the pandemic marked a surge in online gaming revenue, which has held steady since. Online GGR has raked in a staggering $7 billion since iGaming was initiated in 2013, a significant bulk of it being in recent years. An iGaming win of $482.7 million in 2019 escalated to $970.2 million in 2020. In 2022, the iGaming win shot up 22% to $1.66 billion and showed a steady growth of 16% to $1.92 billion last year. As of April 2024, iGaming has experienced a further growth of 21%.

New Jersey enjoys a 15% cut from the gross iGaming revenue, translating to a cool $288.5 million last year alone. While online gaming activity has snowballed by 300% from 2019, legacy play, that is, slot machines and table games inside Atlantic City’s casinos, observed a less dramatic growth spurt of 6% from $2.68 billion to $2.84 billion. As Evolution ventures into its ambitious project, the gambling and gaming landscape of Atlantic City awaits an exciting epoch of transformation.