Louisiana Mobile Wagering Tops $40M in First Four Days, Expects Huge February

Author Image Article By
Last Updated: 
Share On Your Network
Louisiana Mobile Wagering Tops $40M in First Four Days, Expects Huge February
© USA Today

In only four days, mobile sports gambling in Louisiana generated $40.5 million in bets during January.

Louisiana’s mobile sports betting program began on Jan. 28, giving six licensed online bookmakers four days to accept wagers during the first month of 2022.

These national bookmakers, who partnered with Louisiana casinos in offering mobile sports betting apps, reported a combined $11.7 million in promotional play to attract new customers, according to figures released Thursday during a Louisiana Gaming Control Board meeting. This led to the bookmakers reporting a combined loss for the month of $9 million.

Also, at the Control Board meeting, owners of the shuttered DiamondJacks riverboat casino in Bossier City were given 60 days to sell or forfeit their gaming license.

Chairman Praises Mobile Wagering

At Thursday’s Control Board meeting, Chairman Ronnie Johns praised the Louisiana State Police and attorney general’s office for their work in getting mobile sports betting off the ground last month.

Johns said he is proud Louisiana launched mobile sports betting “the right way.”

“It’s been a tremendous success,” he said.

Mobile Launch Capitalizes on LSU Players

The timing of Louisiana’s mobile launch coincided with an NFL playoff game that weekend between the Cincinnati Bengals and Kansas City Chiefs.

Both teams featured former Louisiana State University players, including Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow, who led LSU to a 2019 national title and won the Heisman Trophy.

The Bengals defeated the Chiefs on their way to the Super Bowl on Feb. 13 against the Los Angeles Rams. The Rams rallied late to defeat the Bengals, 23-20.

The LSU campus is in Baton Rouge, the capital city, and one of the state’s gambling hubs.

February Mobile Handle Expected to Be ‘Phenomenal’

The Control Board chairman added that mobile betting revenue should be “pretty phenomenal” once February’s handle is determined. The handle is the amount of money bettors wager on events. February’s figures will be released next month.

During February, Louisiana saw two record mobile sports bets, one for $4.5 million on the Bengals to win the Super Bowl and another for $5 million, also on the Bengals.

Both bets were placed by Houston furniture salesman Jim McIngvale, also known as Mattress Mack.

Because sports betting is illegal in Texas, McIngvale drove next door to Louisiana to place the record-setting wagers. McIngvale lost his bets when the Rams defeated the Bengals.

Retail Sportsbooks Bring in 25% More Than Previous Month

In January, bettors wagered $49.27 million at 13 sportsbooks inside Louisiana’s state-regulated casinos. That total is up 24.8% from December’s handle of $39.49 million.

Once winning bettors were paid in January, the sportsbooks netted $5.32 million in revenue, an increase of 21.7% from the previous month’s total of $4.38 million.

Other figures released Thursday show that 12,185 video gaming devices across the state brought in $65.5 million in revenue during January. These video devices are placed at 1,046 locations.

Louisiana Retail Sports Betting, January vs. December

Betting handle Revenue
January $49.273M $5.333M
December $39.495M $4.381M
Change Up 24.8% Up 21.7%

DiamondJacks Has 60-Days Deadline

At Thursday’s meeting, the Control Board voted to give the owners of the out-of-operation DiamondJacks riverboat casino in Bossier City 60 days to transfer its license to another gaming company. Bossier City is in northwestern Louisiana, across the Red River from Shreveport.

Johns expressed disappointment that no executives from the ownership group, Peninsula Pacific Entertainment, known as P2E, attended the Control Board meeting. The company is negotiating with Mississippi-based Foundation Gaming to obtain the Louisiana license.

The chairman said it is “extremely disturbing” that nothing has occurred for months at the Bossier City site, even though the Control Board has given P2E extended time to develop a plan.

The company had hoped to transfer its gaming license to a proposed land-based casino near New Orleans. That plan had to be abandoned when St. Tammany Parish residents voted against the proposal in December.

Johns said the company has 60 days to complete a transfer to Foundation Gaming or must forfeit its gaming license.

“The clock is ticking,” the chairman said.

Author Image Article By
Last Updated: 
Facebook Icon Twitter Icon Linkedin Icon Email Icon Copy Link Icon