The state of Delaware enjoyed its first full month of legal sports betting and the returns are looking strong. The First State lived up to its nickname by becoming the first state outside of Nevada to fully legalize sports betting.
Delaware barely beat out New Jersey due to a unique situation in which it maintained pre-existing legislation that grandfathered it out of PASPA, the 1992 federal ban on sports betting that was struck down by the Supreme Court in May
The Delaware Lottery reported its partial monthly take over a limited timeframe due to sports betting not going live until June 5 and the fiscal month ending on June 24. The collected and released data is based on all wagers placed over those 20 days.
The state’s racetrack and casino properties took in all of the business as Delaware Park, Dover Downs and Harrington were the three businesses that were allowed to accept wagers. The total announced revenue was an impressive $1,000,247.
Of that figure $125,000 was paid to William Hill, Scientific Games and StadiumTech which served as providers of sports betting services to the venues. The venues themselves kept 40 percent of the take and was divided up based on each’s success.
Delaware Park took in the most and earned the most with $263,924 in its coffer after dividing everything up. Dover Downs came in second with a respectable $57,293 and finally Harrington secured a take of $31,039.
Representing 10 percent of the total revenue, $85,353 was allocated to horse racing purses and the other 50 percent or $437,609 went to the benefit of state.
With an influx of nearly half a million dollars in one month, it’s not hard to realize why states are so bullish on sports betting, particular smaller ones like Delaware where that extra money goes a long way. It also points to the reasoning behind hesitance to blindly accept the demands of sports leagues for integrity fees as they would simply be another tax that would take money out of their pockets.
While the novelty of sports betting no doubt helped to inflate these numbers right off the bat, the fact that sports betting was launched at this particular time of year and has still had such initial success points to a bright future in Delaware.
The World Cup helped tremendously obviously, but the summer months are traditionally the less active ones in terms of American sports as a whole as usually only baseball games are broadcast and widely bet on.
With the heart of the American sports schedule still to come in the fall, there’s plenty of reason to expect revenue to only get higher. The NFL, NHL, NBA and college football and basketball all start their seasons in fall while baseball season wraps up with the World Series.
There’s an additional factor to consider, however, when predicting Delaware’s future sports betting success in particular. The state had allowed for one specific type of betting until the full legalization of wagering on single outcome athletic events and those figures had been tremendous.
During the 2017-18 NFL season, state operators recorded a whopping $4.8 million in revenue from special NFL parlay betting. Bettors were only allowed to bet on NFL games in which multiple teams had to win or results had to be reached in order to collect winnings.
That made the state around $2.4 million with operators pulling in $1.77 million in the month of September alone. The state has offered this brand of betting since 2009 so the concept of switching to traditional outcome betting should be an easy one and one the state is prepared to complete.
That all leads one to suspect that Delaware could be one of the states that is best fit to maximize the benefits sports betting will have on its economy.
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