Despite mobile sportsbooks only being in operation for a portion of the month, New York broke U.S. records for monthly sports-betting handle and gross revenue in January.
The six online sportsbooks that accepted bets in January combined to take more than $1.6bn in online wagers in the three-week period of January 8 through January 30, bringing in almost $113m in gross revenue, according to reports released by the New York State Gaming Commission on Friday (February 4).
The figure shattered the existing U.S. record from October 2021 when neighboring New Jersey reported $1.3bn in monthly handle.
In addition, barring a strong final day of the month for bettors, the monthly gross revenue mark should edge New Jersey’s margin-inflated November 2021 total of $112m as the most lucrative month of sports betting in any U.S. state in history.
Of the six sportsbooks, Caesars accounted for the largest market share by handle, taking more than $615m in bets, as well as by revenue, grossing almost $56m, on the back of a strong introductory bonus that the company has already begun to dial back.
FanDuel brought in the second-highest volume, taking more than $501m in bets, but only produced a little more than half of Caesars revenue, grossing more than $23m.
FanDuel actually passed Caesars for the largest handle in the state in the month’s final week, which ended January 30, taking almost $142m in bets. But the Flutter-owned operator posted negative revenues for the weekly period, reporting a $565,000 loss.
By comparison, Caesars took $128m in bets in the week ending January 30, but held 11 percent of the wagers to gross $14.1m in revenue.
DraftKings held a solid third place in handle, with more than $367m in wagers, and a second-place finish in gross revenue with more than $27m.
The state’s controversial 51 percent tax rate resulted in more than $57m in tax revenue flowing to the state from January alone, marking the highest single-month tax return on sports betting for a state in U.S. history and almost 60 percent of the $96m New Jersey made in taxes on online sports betting in the entirety of 2021.
New York saw its seventh online betting operator, WynnBET, launch on February 3, leaving only Bally’s and Resorts World of the nine selected licensee yet to launch.
Bally’s chairman Soo Kim told CNBC in January that the company did not expect to launch its mobile sports-betting operations in New York until April, calling the heavy promotional environment “insane.”
“We have a longer-term plan and I think part of this is why maybe our plan isn’t fully being grasped by the public markets,” Kim told CNBC. “The public markets tend to be very short-term minded, what’s going to happen in the next earnings.
“We think that actually, the current version of sports betting is not a great business,” he added. “It’s a fine business, it’s not a great business.
“We think that there will be a wave of consolidation that will rationalize promotions, but more importantly, I think people will stop competing with just free money but people will start competing with product.”