Arkansas Sports Betting Bounces Back After Loss in July

Arkansas Sports Betting Bounces Back After Loss in July
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After taking a loss in July, Arkansas reported a positive sports betting revenue for August.

Oaklawn Park sportsbook remained the only one in the state open and saw a drastic increase in handle, up 462.7% from July’s total of $179,315 to $1,008,992 in August. The book took a net win of $69,625, which was a marked improvement from losing $19,633 in July.

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There was no revenue from the Southland Casino and Saracen Casino sportsbooks, but both reopened in September, and along with NFL betting, numbers are expected to rise with the state’s three sportsbooks operating.

The state took its first legal sports bet on July 1, 2019.

The sportsbook at Southland, reopened on Sept. 10, according to arkansasonline; Southland recorded a few months of sports betting in early 2020 before the coronavirus pandemic shut things down. Delaware North, parent company of the casino and race track, placed several Betly betting kiosks at various spots around the casino. There will now be a sportsbook at Southland's Sports Bar & Grill, according to a news release.

Saracen’s sportsbook reopened around the same time and should capitalize on the NFL beginning, also.

EGS Handle Rises

The casinos’ Electronic Games of Skill (EGS) also continued the summer trend of seeing an increase in handle over each month, according to the report. The EGS handle has increased in all the casinos, which were allowed to reopen in mid May, since June.

Oaklawn's total EGS handle for August was $122,083,570, an increase of 2% from July’s $119,701,708. The facility reported a net win of $10,803,888, which was 4.1% higher than July’s total of $10,382,102.

Southland in West Memphis had the busiest stretch once again, taking in $243,349,139 in EGS handle, a small increase of 0.4% over July’s $242,483,019.

Saracen in Pine Bluff saw the largest growth from last month, up 8% from $42,819,664 in July to $46,158,569 in August. Saracen is currently operating out of an annex limited to 300 slot machines as a new casino is being built. The new facility is expected to have a soft opening on Oct. 1, according to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

From May 18 to June 15, casinos were forced to operate at one-third capacity for safety measures. Since then, the allotment had been raised to two-thirds capacity, according to a story in the Democrat-Gazette.

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