PA Fantasy Sports Sites Finally Reap Season-Long League Rewards

Posted on January 23, 2019

While Pennsylvania sports betting is just getting started, PA daily fantasy sports enters its ninth month of regulated operations.

And for the third-straight month, revenue from DFS hovered around $3 million.

Per financials released by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB), daily fantasy sports generated $2,860,503.33 in December adjusted revenue. While that total reflects a near-$400,000 drop-off from November, it still stands as the third-best month since the industry launched in May.

With the Keystone State taking a 15 percent cut as tax, that results in $429,075.51 back to the commonwealth.

DraftKings, FanDuel on top again

Since regulated DFS kicked into gear in spring 2018, the usual suspects have led the pack: DraftKings and FanDuel.

And the margin separating the two daily fantasy sports giants stood as the slimmest since football season kicked off.

For the seventh-straight month, DraftKings reported the highest revenue among the 10 licensed operators, coming in at $1,354,910.39. That total represents a 22.6 percent decline from November, the second-largest month-to-month slide in the state.

A mere $33,000 behind DraftKings’ adjusted revenue, FanDuel generated $1,321,658.98 for its second-best month since beginning operations in Pennsylvania.

Since college football and NFL seasons got underway, it appeared as if DraftKings would pull away. Since August, the operator built its lead over FanDuel from $77,536.31 to a November difference of a whopping $329,256.57.

By minimizing its month-to-month decline, though, FanDuel, whose December revenue reflected a 6.9 percent drop-off, seems to have caught back up with its chief DFS rival.

Other DFS providers enjoy upticks

Of the seven other daily fantasy sports providers, six reported revenue totals in December that were up from the previous month.

Of note, Fantasy Football Players Championship reported its first monthly revenue since beginning operations, likely as a result of seasons concluding.

The operator checked in at $137,188.28 for the third-highest total in the industry.

Also seeing revenue spikes (along with their month-to-month percentage growth):

  • DRAFT: $67,121.23 (44.1 %)
  • Sportshub Technologies: $47,776.94 (3,583.1%)
  • Full Time Fantasy Sports: $11,868.71 (413.7%)
  • Fantasy Draft: $8,035.97 (N/A, did not report November revenue)
  • Boom Fantasy: $821.79 (36.1%)

All but Boom Fantasy reported their best month to date, in terms of revenue.

On the flip side, Yahoo Fantasy Sports did not come out as hot.

Yahoo undergoes significant drop

Twice since the industry’s launch, Yahoo has been in the red. But not as deep as it was in December.

After reporting nearly $21,000 in November, Yahoo last month reported a loss of $88,878.96, essentially resulting in a $13,331.84 kickback from the state.

December by far stands as the operator’s worst month to date, well below the September low of -$12,049.35. All told, because of a poor month, Yahoo since launch has actually lost $50,870.75. For comparison, the next-lowest to-date total belongs to Boom Fantasy at $6,690.99.

PA DFS trying to keep pace with sports betting

Certainly, few, if any, believed PA daily fantasy sports would provide a financial windfall for the state. Now, though, the industry has another, even similar, business to compete with.

While DFS in Pennsylvania has generated $15,309,615.11 since launching last year, PA sports betting has already picked up the pace.

After Hollywood Sportsbook became the lone retail operation in November, pulling in $1.4 million in PA sports betting revenue, two other sportsbooks began operations last month. Combined, Hollywood, Rivers Sportsbook, and SugarHouse Sportsbook reported just shy of $16.2 million in revenue, in itself a higher total than the entire daily fantasy sports industry since last May.

The PA sports betting market has only grown since that time, with Parx SportsbookSouth Philadelphia Turf Club, and Harrah’s Philadelphia each opening retail operations.

Grant Lucas Avatar
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Grant Lucas

Grant Lucas is a longtime sportswriter who has covered the high school, collegiate, and professional levels. A graduate of Linfield College in McMinnville, Grant has covered games and written features and columns surrounding prep sports, Linfield, and Oregon State athletics and the Portland Trail Blazers throughout his career.

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