Virginia Posts April Sports Betting Handle of $236.4 Million

Virginia Posts April Sports Betting Handle of $236.4 Million
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Virginia’s online sports gambling operators, there are seven so far, reported a combined adjusted gross revenue of $11.4 million for April on a total handle of $236.4 million. April is the third full month that the Virginia Lottery has reported sports gambling financial results since the state launched online sports betting on Jan. 21.

Retail sports gambling isn’t expected in Virginia until casinos are built and opened with actual sportsbooks, which won’t happen until at least 2022.

RELATED: More about Virginia sports betting and gaming

The April handle of $236.4 million was a drop of 22% from the March handle of $304 million and the adjusted gross revenue was down about 17.8% from March ($11.4 million from $13.8 million).

The Virginia decrease in sports gambling activity was in line with results nationally. The apparent seasonal sports gambling slump is the result of comparison with March, a month whose sports gambling action is buoyed by fan enthusiasm for college basketball’s March Madness.

Virginia Sports Betting Handle & Revenue, April vs. March

Total HandleRevenue Taxes
Change Down 22.2% Down 17.8% Up 39.6%

VA Tax Collector Sees Increase

Despite the drop in handle, there was an increase in tax collected by the commonwealth. Virginia doesn’t break down sports gambling handle/revenue by individual operator but the lottery did report that four of the operators posted positive adjusted gross revenues. Taxes collected for April were $1.65 million (an increase of nearly 40% from March) with more than $41,000 of that amount earmarked for a problem gambling treatment and support fund. In March, taxes collected from sports gambling were $1.18 million.

In Virginia (as well as some other jurisdictions), operators are permitted to deduct bonuses and promotions that are handed out to customers — called customer acquisition costs — from total revenues. Among the commonwealth’s operators, bonuses and promotions amounted to more than $5.5 million in April. Pre-deduction revenue for operators in April was about $19.4 million so, bonuses and promotions collectively amounted to more than 28% of pre-deduction revenue.

In terms of how bettors did, sports wagering hold averaged about 8.2%, slightly higher than the typical hold range for sports wagering of 5% to 8%.

So far, the commonwealth’s online sports betting operators (which may carry corporate names different from their more familiar brands) are: FanDuel in partnership with the Washington Football Team, DraftKings, BetMGM, Rivers Casino Portsmouth, William Hill/Caesars, Wynn and Unibet Interactive. Three other operators have been approved but have not yet launched.

VA Handle is 6th Nationally

The $236.43 million in April puts Virginia sixth nationally, just ahead of Indiana ($236.40 million) among legal sports betting states. While Virginia has had sports betting since late January, Indiana’s sports betting market has been up and running since September 2019. Here is how states stand in April with Illinois still left to report:

  • New Jersey's April handle of $748 million was a decline of 13% from March’s $859.6 million, according to figures released on May 14. It was still enough to easily pace the nation.
  • Pennsylvania had handle of $479.4 million in April, a 14.4% drop from March’s $560.3 million, but enough to move it ahead of Nevada.
  • Nevada’s handle of $458.2 million was down about 28.5% from March’s handle of $640.98 million, dropping it behind Pennsylvania.

  • Michigan had $274.2 million in total sports handle, a 28.5% decline from March.
  • Colorado’s April handle came in at $244.4 million, down 18.3% from March’s $300.1 million.
  • Indiana had a sports betting handle of $236.4 million for the month, down from March’s $316.7 million. That was a 25% drop.

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