September of this year marked the fifth full season of football sports betting in Pennsylvania. At some point, the market is expected to mature, slightly dropping off in handle and revenue from year to year. This does not seem to be occurring in the Keystone State, however.
October proved that PA online sportsbooks have not completely matured and are in fact continuing to grow. How much the industry can climb remains to be seen.
With more sportsbooks in line to enter the state, it’s almost certain that the sports betting vertical keeps growing.
Pennsylvania sports betting nets $829 million in October bets
The gambling industry in Pennsylvania has been setting records left and right. Sportsbooks reported $829 million in total October bets, setting a new record in the state. The Keystone State beat October 2022’s total of $797.1 million in handle.
The sports betting vertical in Pennsylvania is significantly smaller than the PA online casino market, in terms of operators. There are 13 online sportsbooks compared to 19 online casinos at the moment.
Despite the fact that there are fewer sports betting options, Pennsylvania is proving that sports wagering is still going strong. Here are handle results from the start of the last three football seasons:
- September 2021: $578.8 million
- October 2021: $776.3 million
- September 2022: $645.2 million
- October 2022: $797.1 million
- September 2023: $726.3 million
- October 2023: $829 million
October has been a magical month for PA sports betting. Operators have set a handle record in each of the last three Octobers.
As the football season continues to ramp up with the playoffs nearing, November through January has a chance to also set some new highs.
More PA online sportsbooks are expected to launch soon
The Pennsylvania sports betting market is currently growing with the same amount of operators. BetMGM Sportsbook PA (December 2020), Betway Sportsbook PA (June 2021) and PointsBet Sportsbook PA (February 2022) are the last three sportsbooks to launch in the Keystone State.
ESPN Bet PA debuted earlier this month as a new operator, partnering with PENN Entertainment and replacing Barstool. However, it did not factor into the October success.
The state’s sports betting prowess has been impressive with only a few new platforms joining since late 2020. That is going to change in 2024 with the addition of some sports betting giants.
Fanatics Sportsbook is close to launching in the Keystone State. The sports merchandise company-turned-gaming-operator has one more step to complete before entering the market. With Fanatics’ already-established brand recognition, it’s possible it could compete with market leaders such as FanDuel Sportsbook PA and DraftKings Sportsbook PA.
Bet365, already live in six states, is another respected platform that is making its way to Pennsylvania. The operator applied for a sports betting and online casino license in February and has already partnered with Churchill Downs. Once approved by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB), it shouldn’t take too long for bet365 to launch.
The debut of ESPN Bet PA could also boost the market in the coming months. There is likely to be a honeymoon phase where people will want to try out the new app, and perhaps take advantage of promotions as the football season winds down.
While the fifth full year of sports betting could be a sign of maturation, Pennsylvania is proving to have more in the tank.