Browse articles by topic

PA sports betting and igaming revenue records tumble again in December


The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) has again reported new record monthly revenue totals for sports betting and online gambling in December, though the US state saw further declines in its land-based casino market.

Total revenue from gambling in the state for December fell 42.2% year-on-year to $168.7m, while this figure was also 40.5% lower than the $283.3m recorded in November of last year.

As has been the case for a number of months now, this decline was primarily due to ongoing struggles in land-based casino, which continues to face restrictions such as reduced capacity and temporary closures due to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

In contrast, sports betting revenue almost tripled from $11.4m in December of 2019 to $34.1m in 2020. Online accounted for $32.9m in revenue, compared to $1.2m at retail sportsbooks.

Players also spent more on sports wagering than ever before, with the state’s handle reaching $548.6m, up 60.1% on December of 2019 and surpassing the previous monthly record set in October 2020.

Hollywood Casino at Penn National led the Pennsylvania sports betting market in December with $13.9m in revenue and a handle of $72.6m.

Valley Forge Casino Resort and its FanDuel sportsbook ranked second with $7.3m in revenue, but a higher handle of $209.2m, while the Meadows Casino placed third with $5.4m in revenue off a handle of $131.5m.

Paid fantasy sports revenue slipped 11.8% to $3.0m, as DraftKings led the market with $1.7m in revenue, ahead of main rival FanDuel on $1.0m.

Meanwhile, online gaming revenue rocketed 730.2% year-on-year to a record $71.6m, beating the previous monthly high of $59.8m in November 2020. Online slots revenue reached $46.2m, while online tables revenue amounted to $22.6m and internet poker revenue $2.7m.

Rivers Casino Philadelphia claimed top spot in the igaming market with $19.3m in revenue, ahead of Penn National via on $13.7m and the Valley Forge Casino Resort with $1.2m.

Turning attention to land-based activities, slot machine revenue plummeted 77.5% to $42.2m, as temporary closures hurt operators in December. These closures also led to a decline in table games revenue for the month, with this falling 78.2% to $17.1m.

Revenue from video gaming terminals (VGTs) across the state reached $802,918 in December.

The PGCB also published figures for the state’s performance in the 2020 calendar year, with sports betting and online gambling revenue reaching record levels for the 12-month period, but overall gaming revenue down due to a decline in land-based casino activity.

Total revenue from gambling in the 12 months to December 31, 2020 amounted to $2.65bn, down 22.3% from $3.41bn in 2019.

The PGCB said sports betting had its most successful calendar year to date, with revenue in this area of the market jumping 135.5% from $84.1m to $189.7m.

Though the PGCB did not publish the state’s full-year sports betting handle, it did reveal that the Valley Forge Casino Resort and FanDuel led the market in 2020, generating $69.1m in revenue, up 180.8% from the previous year.

Meadows Casino was second with $30.3m in revenue, an increase of 1,204.8%, while the Hollywood Casino at Penn National placed third with revenue of $19.6m, up 36.8% on 2019.

Pennsylvania’s online gaming market also experienced growth in 2020, with revenue here rocketing 1,583.9% year-on-year to $565.8m. This was partly due to consumers not being able to gamble at land-based casinos for a large part of the year due to novel coronavirus (Covid-19) restrictions.

Rivers Casino Philadelphia led the igaming market with $162.6m in revenue, up 1,278.0% on the previous year, ahead of the Hollywood Casino on $122.5m and the Valley Forge Casino Resort with $95.3m.

However, the closure of land-based casinos for a number of months in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic meant revenue in this sector declined. Table games revenue slipped 42.6% from $2.36bn to $1.36bn, while table games revenue was also down 44.2% to $504.3m.

VGT revenue increased 615.0% to $16.6m, but the PGCB reported a drop in fantasy sports revenue, which was down 18.3% year-on-year to $21.1m.