Borgata Poker USA is one of the first online poker sites to enter the regulated US market. The first Borgata site went live in New Jersey in 2013 , and it has been operating there ever since.
At the moment, the Borgata brand is live in two US states, namely New Jersey and Pennsylvania. However, it is a part of the larger entity operating under the name partypoker US Network. The network comprises another two brands, namely BetMGM and partypoker.
In New Jersey, Borgata takes advantage of the fact they can share player pools with the other two operators that both have a presence in the state. However, the site currently does not have any interstate partnerships, so the term “network” is a bit confusing.
With the Wire Act situation set to finally change for the better, Borgata Poker USA might be on the lookout for expansion opportunities. Once interstate compacts become a reality, the operator will have more incentive to spread to other regulated markets and take advantage of possibilities provided by much larger player pools across the board.
Borgata Poker USA began on November 26, 2013 when it launched in New Jersey. The site has been live ever since, making it one of the longest-running regulated poker rooms in the US.
For more than seven years, New Jersey was the only state that Borgata Poker US had an online presence in. Then, in April 2021, it went live with its second room in Pennsylvania.
Borgata Poker in the US is the result of joint venture between technology company Entain and the global entertainment giant MGM Resorts International.
US Borgata Poker sites run on partypoker’s software and along with BetMGM and partypoker itself, the trio are often referred to as the partypoker US network. However, inter-state player pooling is not currently allowed between these sites.
Luckily, the legal bar on shared liquidity looks certain to change soon. Promoting the idea of a network, is a clear indication that the partypoker US sites want to offer multi-state player pools as soon as they are legal allowed to.
The collaboration does allow the three operators to pool players within state jurisdictions—most notably in New Jersey—giving Borgata Poker USA the chance to generate greater cash game traffic and bigger fields for tournaments. Having these three different skins enables them to try different things, meaning Borgata Poker USA can experiment with formats and promotions, and develop a more distinctive feel.
Once multi-state, shared liquidity is a reality, other states will inevitably regulate online poker. Increased player pools will make it much easier for poker rooms to be profitable—especially in places with small populations—and more profit means more taxes, and few states will want to miss out on that.
The most likely candidates for the next Borgata Poker US Site are:
Illinois will be of particular interest to the operator, due to its large population (approximately 13 million). It is also worth noting that Borgata currently has no presence in Michigan, which already has regulated gaming and is another jurisdiction with a population of over 10 million people, making the Great Lake State another likely candidate for the next Borgata poker room.
The Borgata brick-and-mortar resort opened in July 2003, instantly becoming the highest grossing casino in Atlantic City. In 2013, it partnered with bwin.party to offer online poker in the state of New Jersey.
Borgata Poker USA as we know it today, began to take shape in 2018, when Entain (formerly known as GVC) teamed up with MGM Resorts International. That partnership now runs Borgata, as well as BetMGM and partypoker in the US.
The three skins all use partypoker software for their poker rooms. As such, Borgata Poker sites in the US have a similar design and feel to the rest of the partypoker network. They also offer a similar choice of tournaments and cash games, as well as many of the same promotions and bonuses.
Borgata New Jersey greets new players with a pretty typical welcome bonus: a 100% first deposit match, up to a maximum of $600, released in 10% chunks as wagering requirements are met. There is also $20 in free funds to try what the room has to offer with no obligations.
Traffic on the site is decent. All three partypoker US network skins have a presence in New Jersey, and they pool their player base within the state, generating very similar numbers to PokerStars.
Both lag somewhat behind WSOP NJ however—which enjoys the benefit of shared liquidity with Nevada and Delaware—illustrating how valuable multi-state poker will be when it becomes available for the rest of the US.
Borgata NJ runs regular tournament series, most notably the Borgata Online Poker Open, the WPT Borgata Online Series, as well as the partypoker US Network Online Series.
Last September’s Borgata Online Series was a particular success, producing a $917,300 total prize pool. The Main Event alone generated $432,700— the largest prizepool in partypoker US network history.
The games spread at Borgata Poker New Jersey are heavily weighted towards No Limit Hold’em, as you would expect. Omaha player might struggle to find cash games although there are a handful of PLO tournaments spread daily, including some Hi/lo contests.
Variety of games will improve when multi-state becomes a reality. The larger player pools will allow Borgata to offer more niche variants, as well as games that require more liquidity, such as fast-fold poker.
In keeping with the overall theme of network, Borgata Pennsylvania looks and feels similar to the New Jersey poker room. The welcome package for new sign ups is basically the same as for NJ, including the added bonus of $25 to try out the games on offer—$10 for cash games and $15 for tournaments.
There is an obvious reason for the extra inducement: Borgata Poker PA is one the most recent poker rooms to go live in the US, having launched in April 2021, and the operator wants to build up a player base as quickly as possible.
Its main rival in the Keystone state is PokerStars PA, which had a de facto monopoly there for 18 months. In that time PokerStars PA became the biggest regulated site in the US.
It is unsurprising then that Borgata Poker has had a tough start in Pennsylvania. Despite sharing liquidity with the sister site BetMGM PA, it has struggled to make much of a dent in PokerStars’ traffic.
Borgata PA is such a new site that, at the time of writing, its inaugural online series has only just begun: It kicked off on June 20, also running on BetMGM PA.
It remains to be seen how successful it will be, but the $270,000 set aside in guaranteed prizes suggests a good degree of optimism for this first venture.
Understandably, with low traffic on the site, the variety of games on offer is not huge but is it very early days for the site. Borgata will be hoping to expand its player base and range of games as time goes on. The prospect of inter-state shared liquidity is looming—which would help enormously in this regard.
Borgata online offers other gaming products aside from poker. The New Jersey site features an online casino and sportsbook.
The casino provides table games such as blackjack and roulette, including live dealer varieties. It also offers a large selection of slots, with several games that feature progressive jackpots.
The sportsbook covers all major US sports, as well as some of the more obscure ones such as table tennis, NASCAR, MMA and lacrosse.
Players in Pennsylvania currently only have access to casino games but as BetMGM PA runs a sportsbook, it is probable that Borgata PA will also add one in the future.
|Pennsylvania||Available via BetMGM PA||Yes (Borgata Casino PA)|
April 15, 2011, has gone down in poker history as Black Friday, the day the Department of Justice (DOJ) closed down online poker rooms across the US. Since then, there has been a long and slow process to legalize and regulate poker on a state-by-state basis.
It took two years for the first regulated poker room to go live: Ultimate Poker launching in Nevada in April 2013. Delaware was the next stage to launch online poker, seven months later; less than three weeks after that came Borgata Poker NJ.
In the early days, online poker in New Jersey was dominated by Borgata and WSOP, which both went live in November 2013. At this point, New Jersey was by far the biggest state to offer regulated online poker, and it would remain so for a long time.
For a while there was hope that regulated poker would open up quickly. But that optimism was short-lived, and it would be six years before Pennsylvania became the next state to offer the game online.
While New Jersey remained Borgata’s only live poker room in the US, a lot of work was going on behind the scenes to make the legal and logistical changes that would allow Borgata USA to expand in the future.
Partypoker, who had been struggling for several years, immediately saw an upturn in its fortunes, growing 10% in the first year after acquisition.
The following month, Borgata and WSOP were joined in New Jersey by PokerStars and the three remain the big operators in the Garden State.
Borgata Poker NJ is at a disadvantage here, as WSOP enjoys the only interstate shared liquidity currently operating in the US. It pools its NJ players with those in Nevada and Delaware and therefore generates more traffic than Borgata NJ, highlighting just how valuable shared liquidity will be when it becomes available throughout the rest of the US.
In 2017, GVC—who was already providing Borgata’s poker and casino software—signed a deal with MGM Resorts international, forming what was to become BetMGM and Borgata Poker USA.
GVC changed its name to Entain in December 2020 and committed to operate solely in regulated markets. This laid the foundations for further Borgata Poker sites in the US.
Players in Pennsylvania now have the choice of four poker rooms.
The inception of a new Borgata US site after six years is a sure sign that Entain and MGM have confidence in the brand and intend to expand it as the US markets open up.
Online poker in the US is opening up at the fastest rate since regulation began. Seven states have now legalized internet gaming, and many more are in the process of doing so.
The main driving force behind this is the prospect of shared liquidity between state jurisdictions. In January, after years of legal ambiguity, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit ruled that the 1961 Wire Act did not apply to online poker.
The DOJ can appeal this decision but the window for it to do so is about to close. By the end of June 2021, it should be clear, once and for all where the law stands on the subject of inter-state online gambling.
Shared liquidity now seems inevitable, and the taxes that come with it will will be too good a prospect for most states to turn down. It appears that the US is approaching the tipping point, where traffic and revenue could begin to resemble those that were enjoyed before the events of Black Friday.
As for states where Borgata may go live next, there are a few likely candidates. The most likely of these are:
Connecticut passed a bill to legalize online gaming in May of this year and will be of interest to operators, although its relatively small population may count against it until shared liquidity becomes a reality.
Illinois has not yet completed the process of legalization, but its much larger population of almost 13 million will be a big attraction for all major poker rooms.
Michigan, of course, has had online poker since January 2021, and with sister site BetMGM MI already live in the state, all the infrastructure is in place for Borgata to launch there if it wishes to do so.
Once shared liquidity is available, the partypoker US network will really come into its own. Borgata US may only have two poker rooms up and running, but it will be able to pool its customers with all other sites in the network.
As well as combining players between Borgata NJ and Borgata PA, it will instantly obtain a presence in Michigan through BetMGM PA. The huge resultant increase in cash game traffic and tournament field sizes would be a great benefit, both to Borgata Poker USA and its players.
Borgata Poker USA is legal and fully regulated. To be eligible to play at Borgata, you must be a US resident, at least 21 years of age, and physically located in a state that Borgata is operating in.
Yes. You must be a US resident, and you must be physically present in the same state as the operator to play. Borgata uses geolocation technology to establish players’ whereabouts. It is extremely accurate and players trying to log in from outside the jurisdiction in question will not be able to play.
At the present time, Borgata is only available in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Shared liquidity is not currently permitted between states, though that is likely to change in the near future.
No, unfortunately that is not possible. Nor can a US resident play when they are out of the country.
Yes, you can register with Borgata Poker USA, wherever you live in the country—but you will not be permitted to play unless you are within the respective jurisdiction.
The promotion is the first to feature Darren Elias as brand ambassador.