New York managed to post the second-highest monthly total in US history in February of $1.5bn, despite wagering at its sportsbooks slowing down slightly during the month, according to PlayNY.
Even with promotional spending decreasing and football season over, the NCAA March Madness basketball tournament and the return of baseball should help sportsbooks in the Empire State to continue challenging US monthly handle records.
Mike Mazzeo, the lead analyst for PlayNY.com, commented: “As big as the Super Bowl is, it is still just one game. And a slowdown in the immediate aftermath of the game is to be expected everywhere.
“The mild pullback won’t last long, though. The NCAA Tournament is the nation’s largest sports betting holiday, and that presents a huge customer acquisition opportunity for sportsbooks.”
Data from the New York State Gaming Commission has revealed that New York’s sportsbooks achieved a handle of more than $1.5bn in February, including $1.53bn online. However, wagering was down from the previous month by 12% (January: $1.7bn).
During the 28 days of the month, online sportsbooks averaged $54.6m in bets per day, down on January’s figure ($69.6m per day).
In terms of gross revenue, online sportsbooks won $82.4m from February’s bets, down from January’s US record-breaking $124.1m. Operators netted $40.4m in revenue, yielding $42.0m for the Empire State’s coffers.
Since their launch at the start of January, New York sportsbooks have now generated $206.5m in gross revenue from a $3.2bn handle.
“A modest pullback was expected in February, and it shouldn’t diminish what we have seen so far in New York,” said Eric Ramsey, an analyst for the PlayUSA.com Network, which includes PlayNY.com.
“In less than two months, New York sportsbooks have generated more than $3bn in wagers. That is a result that would have been difficult to fathom before January.”
Per operator, FanDuel led the online market in February with $568.1m in bets (January: $517.4m), producing $23.2m in gross revenue (January: $28.1m).
DraftKings followed with $387.6m in wagers (January: $378.0m), generating a market-leading $30.0m in gross revenue (January: $29.6m).
After leading all online operators in January with $627.4m in wagers, Caesars fell to a $323.4m handle in February, with gross revenue falling as well to $19.8m (January: $59.0m).
Ramsey stated that the NCAA March Madness basketball tournament should help sportsbooks throughout March, and now with baseball’s lockout over, operators should continue to flourish in the coming months.
He added: “With the NCAA Tournament just ahead, sportsbooks have another big event to use as a way to attract interest from new bettors. Baseball’s lockout was a concern for the industry, but with that over now sportsbooks will have numerous opportunities to expand their customer bases in the coming months.”