Pennsylvania sportsbooks hit almost $580m in September wagers

September betting volume at Pennsylvania's sportsbooks nearly hit $580m for just the second time according to PlayPennsylvania.
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September betting volume at Pennsylvania’s sportsbooks was the second-most all-time for the state, nearly hitting $580m for just the second time according to PlayPennsylvania which tracks regulated online gaming and sports betting in the state.

PlayPennsylvania noted that growth was bound to happen during the first full month of football, with sports betting and online casino gambling producing more than $110m in revenue.

Katie Kohler, analyst for PlayPennsylvania, commented: “Nothing stirs the sports betting drink like football, even when the Steelers and the Eagles get off to slow starts. Penn State made a difference in boosting interest, which certainly helps. The bottom line is every sportsbook wants a strong start to the football season, and that is exactly what Pennsylvania’s industry got in September.”

Pennsylvania’s sportsbooks drew $578.8m in wagers in September, according to official data. The month’s volume was up 25.1% from $462.8m in September 2020 and a 66.1% improvement from $348.5m in August.

Gross sports betting revenue fell just short of January’s $49.3m record, with operators generating $48.1m in September, 163.2% greater than the $18.3m during the same period last year and 90.1% better than August’s $25.3m. The revenue created $28.3m in taxable revenue, generating $10.2m in state taxes and local share assessments.

Through the first nine months of 2021, bettors have placed $4.3bn in wagers or 45.6% of the $9.4bn wagered in Pennsylvania since sports betting opened in November 2018.

Dustin Gouker, analyst for the PlayUSA Network, which includes PlayPennsylvania, stated: “Pennsylvania’s sportsbooks are in a position to generate more in wagering this fall than the $1.5bn that was bet in all of 2019.

“The industry will in all likelihood continue to grow in the months ahead, gaining steam in October with baseball’s postseason and the opening of the NBA season. Sports betting should produce some eye-popping numbers over the next few months.”

Online sportsbooks in September accepted $527.4m in wagers. FanDuel had the biggest share of the online market with $183.7m in wagering. Revenue rose to $21.2m. DraftKings was second with $164.7m in wagers, which yielded $5.1m in gross revenue.

Penn National’s Barstool-branded app attracted $52.8m in wagers, producing $2.6m in gross revenue. The app has generated $52.9m in revenue on $647.7m in bets since launching in September last year.

Gouker added: “Barstool hasn’t quite achieved the ‘world domination’ that founder Dave Portnoy proclaimed with the app launched, but it has performed well. No operator has seriously challenged the dominance of FanDuel and DraftKings yet. But Barstool has at least proven to be an important player in Pennsylvania.”

Retail sportsbooks drew $51.3m in September wagers, up from $48.7m in the same month last year, creating $7.2m in gross sports betting revenue (September 2020’s $5.1m). Rivers Pittsburgh topped the retail market with $7.9m in bets.

Online casinos and poker rooms produced $111.8m in GGR, the second-most all-time in Pennsylvania. September’s revenue was up 61.3% compared to $69.4m in the same period last year and up 8.4% from August’s $103.2m.

The revenue created $97.8m in taxable revenue, yielding $41.7m in state and local taxes. Wagering at online casinos hit $3.5bn in September, up from $3.2bn in August.

Kohler concluded: “Online casinos have a symbiotic relationship with online sportsbooks. When sportsbooks do well it tends to lift the fortunes of online casinos, and vice versa. We saw that in action in September.”