Colorado sportsbooks kicked off the new year by achieving the state’s first-ever plus $500m monthly handle thanks to strong interest in NFL and NBA action, according to PlayColorado, which tracks the state’s regulated sports betting market.
The Centennial State came close to a $600m handle as well, as January’s $574m extended the state’s strong run which began in September, breaking its monthly handle record that was set last October.
Ian St Clair, the lead analyst for PlayColorado.com, stated: “The NFL’s decisions to add an extra week of regular-season games and expand the playoffs were a boon for sportsbooks, but the NBA continues to be the state’s hottest bet.
“With the Super Bowl in February and the NCAA Tournament in March, sportsbooks should continue to see heavy betting volume numbers before seasonally tapering off in spring.”
Data released by the Colorado Division of Gaming has revealed that Colorado’s sportsbooks took a $573.7m handle in January, up 75.5% year-over-year (January 2021: $326.9m), including $567m (98.8%) in online bets. The state’s online sportsbooks have now collected $4.4bn since their May 2020 launch.
January’s handle was a record for the state, topping the previous best of $491.5m set in October last year. In terms of the month overall across the US, only New York, New Jersey, Nevada, and Pennsylvania have reported higher betting volume so far.
Gross revenue of $34.6m was won by the Centennial State’s sportsbooks during the month, a 49.7% improvement YoY (January 2021: $22.7m) and up 40.1% on the previous month’s $24.6m.
After $21.5m in promotional credits, $11.7m in taxable revenue was generated by sportsbooks, yielding $1.5m in state taxes, the second-most all-time for the state.
“Colorado’s emphasis on mobile betting continues to pay off with impressive results, month after month,” said Eric Ramsey, an analyst for the PlayUSA.com network, which includes PlayColorado.com.
“Even with an onslaught of legalization over the last year, the state remains one of the most innovative and successful markets in the US.”
Per sport, pro football led the way in January wagering with $144.1m (December: $136.5m) thanks to a busy NFL schedule which included games played over five different weekends. Meanwhile, pro basketball generated $163.6m in bets (December: $125.5m).
Pro football and pro basketball were followed by college basketball ($63.1m), ice hockey ($24.7m), tennis ($20.0m), college football ($16.0m), and soccer ($14.7m).
St Clair added: “The football season has propelled sports betting to a new level. It is hard to imagine the last five months going any better.”