US Sports Betting Update – Arizona sportsbooks enjoy record month
Arizona sportsbooks generated a record $55.2 million in revenue following a string of bad results for bettors in May. New figures from the Arizona Department of Gaming show that sports betting operators handled $461.5 million, which was down 10% compared to the previous month. However, sportsbooks held onto 11.9% of all the money wagered, which helped them shatter the previous record for monthly revenue.
That could be a result of Phoenix sports fans backing their hometown heroes. The Phoenix Suns suffered a 4-1 series defeat to the Dallas Mavericks in the NBA playoffs in May. It was a painful period for Suns fans, as they watched their team lose 103-94, 111-101, 113-86 and 123-90. Phoenix failed to cover the spread in all four of those games, so anyone wagering on the Suns has a bad month. Elsewhere, the Arizona Diamondbacks went 14-14 during May. There was a bad spell during the middle of the month, in which they lost six straight, which may also have caused some pain for anyone blindly betting on their team.
The $55.2 million in revenue represented a 48.4% month-on-month increase compared to April. Sportsbooks spent $13.8 million on promotional credits, leaving taxable revenue of $41.4 million. Arizona takes a 10% tax rate after deductions, so it earned $4.1 million for the month, which is also a record for the Copper State.
Arizona emerged as the sixth largest state for sports betting in May, behind only New York, New Jersey, Illinois, Nevada and Pennsylvania. FanDuel was the market leader, with a handle of $152.4 million and revenue of $24.8 million. DraftKings was second, having taken $141.1 million in wagers and held onto $14.3 million in revenue. BetMGM was third, with an 18.4% market share, which left it comfortably ahead of Caesars Sportsbook. The top four sportsbooks accounted for 92.3% of the market, leaving the remain 14 operators to fight for scraps.
Nevada Betting Handle Dips to Annual Low
Nevada is a lot quicker to report trading figures than its south-eastern neighbor. It has just reported handle and revenue for June, showing that it was a quiet month. The handle dipped below the $500 million mark for the first time since August 2021, coming in at $490.4 million. That was down 12.6% compared to May, and it was considerably lower than the record of $1.1 billion set in January this year.
Silver State sportsbooks generated revenue of $23.8 million. That amounted to a hold of 4.9%, highlighting just how high the 11.9% hold rate in Arizona was. It was the seventh straight month in which the handle stayed below 5% in Nevada, suggest that either bettors in the state are savvier than their counterparts around the country or that sportsbooks there offer better odds. The state earned $1.6 million in tax revenue for June.
It is always a quiet month in the sporting calendar, so a low handle was expected. MLB was going strong throughout June, and baseball wagers reached $294.8 million. Sportsbooks held 5.3% for revenue of $15.5 million. Hockey was a bad sport for bettors, with a 14.5% hold for $5.2 million in revenue off a $25.8 million handle. Bettors wagered $88 million on baseball,
and sportsbooks held just 3.5% of it. Mobile wagers now account for 67.2% of the handle, compared to 58% a year ago. It is north of 90% in most states, but Nevada requires in-person registration for online sports betting, which is designed to protect land-based businesses.
Sports betting was dwarfed by casino gaming as the Nevada Gaming Control Board released its June figures. Operators in the state held $1.28 billion in gambling revenue, up 8.1% year-on-year, with baccarat driving the growth. It represented the best June on record for the industry, and the 16th consecutive month in which revenue has topped $1 billion.
Tourism has driven the strong performance. Harry Reid International Airport in Las Vegas recorded its busiest month in June, with 4.7 million passengers, pointing to a positive post-pandemic future for Sin City. “I’m not surprised with the gaming win figures – especially with what we’re hearing and witnessing with the airport and how busy it is,” said Michael Lawton, senior research analyst for the Nevada Gaming Control Board. “We are in good shape heading into the fall, and the billion-dollar win amount is looking safe.”
FanDuel Announces FanFest Dates for Chicago
FanDuel’s popular FanFest event will head to Chicago this year. The one-day festival will be held on Saturday, September 10 at Guaranteed Rate Field – the home of the White Sox – from 2 - 9 p.m. CT. Rapper Wiz Khalifa and DJ Alesso will headline the event, while Brian Urlacher, Devin Hester, Charles Tillman are among the Chicago sports legends lined up to attend FanFest 2022.
“We are excited to bring our successful and highly-entertaining FanDuel FanFest event to the great city of Chicago,” said Andrew Sneyd, senior vice president of brand at FanDuel Group. “Between the amazing musical performances featuring Wiz Khalifa and Alesso, and the legendary athletes like Brian Urlacher and Devin Hester who will be in attendance, this event will have something for all and is just another way for us to do something extraordinary to celebrate our customers and sports betting in the state of Illinois.”
Throughout the day, visitors will be treated to FanDuel’s Superstar Showdown, where the Chicago sports legends will compete in a variety of challenges, including ax throwing, connect 4 basketball, quarterback challenge and H-O-R-S-E. There will also be a pop-up sports bar and lounge.
FanDuel dominates the Illinois sports betting market, with a share of around 35%. Its closest rivals are DraftKings, BetRivers, PointsBet and BetMGM, but FanDuel has pulled away from the chasing pack over the past year. It hopes that FanFest Chicago will cement its status as top dog in the state. The last FanFest took place in Arizona last year, and it has helped FanDuel carve out a No. 1 position in the Copper State.