NFL betting spurs nearly $800 million in wagers, while online casinos top $130 million in revenue for first time, according to PlayPennsylvania.
(LAS VEGAS) — Pennsylvania’s online and retail sportsbooks capitalized on five weekends of football in January to break the state’s monthly record for wagering once again. The surge in sports betting coupled with another record in online casino revenue made January one of the most lucrative months yet for Pennsylvania’s online gaming industry, according to PlayPennsylvania, which tracks regulated online gaming and sports betting in the state.
“Pennsylvania’s sports betting growth has lagged behind similarly sized states like Illinois, but the growth has still remained consistent,” said Dustin Gouker, analyst for the PlayUSA.com Network, which includes PlayPennsylvania.com. “Simply put, whether it’s sports betting or online casino gaming, more people are betting more often now than a year ago. And there is little reason to believe the growth will stop this year.”
Pennsylvania sportsbooks generated $793.7 million in wagers, which was up 29.0% from $615.3 million in January 2021, according to official data released Friday. January’s handle rose 5.8% from $750.4 million in December and topped the previous record of $776.3 million wagered in October 2021.
Sportsbooks won $53.4 million in gross revenue from those wagers, up 8.3% from $49.3 million in January 2021 and up 17.9% from $45.3 million in December. After $21.2 million in promotional spending, sportsbooks closed the month with $32.2 million in taxable revenue, yielding $11.6 million in state taxes and local share assessments.
“The NFL did sportsbooks a big favor this year by adding a week of regular season games and expanding the playoffs, then playing remarkably close games that kept bettors engaged from start to finish,” said Katie Kohler, an analyst for PlayPennsylvania.com. “With five full weekends of NFL games for the first time ever in January, a full slate of NBA action, and college football’s national championship, anything less than a wagering record would have been a disappointment.”
Online sportsbooks accounted for $737.4 million, or 92.9% of the state’s handle in January. FanDuel was the online market leader with $273.3 million in wagers, or 34.8% of the state’s online market. That led to a state-best $25.1 million in operator revenue.
DraftKings was second in January with $197.6 million in wagers, yielding $8.4 million in gross revenue. BetMGM followed with a $84.4 million handle, producing $5.5 million in gross revenue. Penn National’s Barstool-branded app was fourth with $74.7 million in online wagers, yielding $3.4 million in gross revenue.
Retailer sportsbooks generated $56.3 million in wagers in January, down from $57.1 million in December. Wagers yielded $5.8 million in gross revenue, up from $2.8 million. Rivers Pittsburgh topped the retail market with $9.2 million in bets, topping Parx’s $8.3 million handle.
Online casinos and poker
Online casinos and poker rooms produced a record $130.0 million in gross gaming revenue in January, edging the previous best of $127.6 million reached in December by 1.9%. Revenue was also up 42.5% from $91.2 million in January 2021.
Ultimately, online casino games and poker produced a record $108.3 million in taxable revenue, which yielded $44.6 million in state taxes and local assessments.
“The popularity of online casinos have had a positive effect on online sportsbooks, especially with apps like DraftKings, BetMGM, and Barstool that have a strong foothold in both,” Kohler said. “In essence, online casino gaming is the tide that lifts all boats.”
Other highlights from January:
- Online casinos and poker rooms gained $4.2 million in gross gaming revenue per day over the 31 days of January, up from $4.1 million per day in December.
- Wagering at online casinos slipped to $4.1 billion from $4.3 billion in December.
- Poker generated $3.4 million in revenue. Mount Airy/PokerStars topped poker operators with $2.2 million in revenue.
- Penn National, which includes the DraftKings, BetMGM, Barstool, and Hollywood casinos, topped online casinos with $51.2 million in gross revenue. Rivers Philadelphia, which includes SugarHouse, Borgata, and BetRivers casinos, was second with $33.5 million.
For more information and updates on legal betting in PA, visit PlayPennsylvania.com/news.
Contact: Zack Hall, Catena Media, [email protected].
Photo credit: AP Photo/Charlie Riedel