Nevada’s regulated gambling market contracted again in January 2021 as total gaming revenue fell by 27 per cent to $761.8m.
Gaming revenue declined year-on-year for the eleventh consecutive month since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, although the market recorded growth of 11 per cent compared to the previous month’s $683.7m total.
Revenue from slot machines declined by 22 per cent year-on-year to $526.5m in January, accounting for 69 per cent of total revenue, while revenue from Table, Counter and Card Games fell by 36 per cent to $235.4m, with the most popular games being Blackjack ($55.0m), sports betting ($52.4m) and Baccarat ($28.9m).
Sports betting revenue soared by 160 per cent compared to a year ago thanks to the availability of sporting events, from January sports handle of $647m.
American football accounted for the bulk of January’s sports betting revenue at $25.6m, with basketball contributing $22.2m, ice hockey $1.7m, Sports Parlay Cards $1.1m and other sports $2.3m, offsetting negative revenue from baseball.
Race Books contributed a further $2.3m in revenue during the month, a decline of 17 per cent versus January 2019.
In the past twelve months, Nevada’s total gambling revenue has fallen by 37 per cent year-on-year to $7.60bn, with slot machine revenue falling 34 per cent to $5.27bn and revenue from Table, Counter and Card Games 44 per cent lower at $2.33bn. This includes a 12 per cent drop in sports betting revenue to $295.0m and a 33 per cent decline in Race Book revenue to $25.6m due to cancellations in the early part of 2020.
The Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB) has authorised nine operators to launch online sports betting and iGaming in the state on Friday.
The state gambling regulator has approved the state’s first online offerings to go live on 22 January, with authorised operators including DraftKings, William Hill, Penn National Gaming’s Barstool Sportsbook, Churchill Downs Inc’s TwinSpires, Golden Nugget Online Gaming, Rush Street Interactive’s BetRivers, BetMGM, FanDuel and Wynn.
“The Michigan Gaming Control Board and the state’s commercial and tribal casinos will begin a new era Jan. 22 with the launch of regulated online gaming and sports betting,” said MGCB executive director Richard Kalm. “Michigan residents love sports and, judging by inquiries we’ve received, eagerly anticipate using mobile devices to place bets through the commercial and tribal casinos.
“Online gaming and sports betting will provide the casinos with new ways to engage with customers while the state and local communities will benefit from taxes and payments on wagering revenue.”
Kalm said that the days between authorization and launch will give the operators and platform providers additional time for testing and adjustments before operations go live.
The MGCB expects to authorize additional operators and platform providers in the coming days and weeks as agency staff review other submissions to ensure they meet the state’s regulatory requirements.
“We want the public to have confidence when they place wagers, and our agency has required the providers to prove they meet Michigan’s standards, which are designed to protect the participants,” Kalm said.
MICHIGAN’S AUTHORISED OPERATORS
Tribe/Casino Operator Gaming Type Offered
Bay Mills Indian Community DraftKings Online Casino/Sports Betting
Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians William Hill Online Casino/Sports Betting
Greektown Casino Penn Sports/Barstool Sportsbook Online Sports Betting
Hannahville Indian Community TwinSpires Online Casino/Sports Betting
Keweenaw Bay Indian Community Golden Nugget Online Gaming Online Casino/Sports Betting
Little River Band of Ottawa Indians Rush Street Online Casino/Sports Betting
MGM Grand Detroit BetMGM/Roar Digital Online Casino/Sports Betting
MotorCity Casino FanDuel Online Casino/Sports Betting
Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians Wynn Online Casino/Sports Betting
Illinois’ regulated sports betting market grew for the seventh consecutive month in December as total wagers reached a new high of $491.7m.
Despite the closure of all retail sportsbooks during the month due to COVID-19, total wagers were up 9 per cent compared to the previous month.
The state’s five online sportsbooks collected $324.5m in wagers on professional sports in December, with $167.2m wagered on college sports and a further $37,545 on motor races.
ILLINOIS SPORTS BETTING HANDLE: DECEMBER 2020 (US$)
Online Retail TOTAL
Casino Queen 195,431,892 — 195,431,892
Par-A-Dice Gaming 144,445,143 — 144,445,143
Midwest Gaming & Entertainment 111,216,418 — 111,216,418
Hawthorse Race Course 32,043,420 — 32,043,420
Elgin Riverboat Resort 8,583,662 — 8,583,662
Alton Casino — — —
HC Joliet — — —
HC Aurora — — —
TOTAL 491,720,535 — 491,720,535
Casino Queen and its partner DraftKings continued to lead the way as the state’s market leader for sports betting with online wagers of $195.4m during the month.
This was ahead of Boyd Gaming’s Par-A-Dice Casino and partner FanDuel, which generated online wagers $144.4m in December.
The next biggest operator was Churchill Downs Incorporated and Rush Street Gaming’s Rivers Casino Des Plaines (trading as Midwest Gaming & Entertainment), which saw online wagers from BetRivers.com reach $111.2m.
Hawthorne Race Course and partner PointsBet collected online wagers of $32.0m, while Caesars Entertainment’s Grand Victoria Casino and its partner William Hill (trading as Elgin Riverboat Resort) took in wagers of $8.6m.
Gaming & Leisure Properties’ Hollywood Casino Aurora and Penn National Gaming’s Argosy Casino Alton and Hollywood Casino Joliet booked no sports bets in December due to the retail closures.
Delaware’s regulated iGaming market enjoyed a strong start to 2021 as net revenue nearly doubled to $738,525 in January.
Continuing on from the market’s strong growth last year, the state’s three licensed iGaming operators saw total amounts wagered soar 106 per cent year-on-year to $21.1m during the month.
With $20.4m paid out in winnings, this generated net revenue of $738,525 for the three operators, an increase of 90 per cent versus the prior year period.
Video lottery games continued to generate the bulk of the total as net revenue soared 134 per cent to $584,443, while table games revenue climbed 7 per cent to $114,449, and poker rake and fees rose 27 per cent to $39,633.
DELAWARE IGAMING NET REVENUE: JANUARY 2021 (US$)
Delaware Park Dover Downs Harrington TOTAL
Video Lottery 249,070 197,233 138,141 584,443
Table Games 22,708 68,992 22,749 114,449
Poker 23,400 10,873 5,359 39,633
TOTAL 295,178 277,098 166,249 738,525
Delaware Park remained market leader in January as amounts wagered rose 116 per cent to $9.5m, generating net revenue of $295,178, an increase of 57 per cent year-on-year. This comprised a 151 per cent increase in video lottery net revenue to $249,070 and a 9 per cent rise in poker rake and fees to $23,400, which offset a 67 per cent drop in table games revenue to $22,708.
Amounts wagered at Dover Downs increased 79 per cent compared to a year ago to $6.8m, with net revenue more than doubling to $277,098. Video lottery revenue increased by 93 per cent to $197,233, with table games net revenue up significantly compared to last year, soaring 317 per cent to $68,992. Poker rake and fees rose 37 per cent year-on-year to $10,873.
For the second consecutive month, the biggest growth came from Harrington Raceway as amounts wagered increased by 140 per cent to $4.8m, with net revenue climbing 128 per cent to $166,249. This followed a 187 per cent rise in video lottery net revenue to $138,141, while table games net revenue rose marginally by 0.6 per cent to $22,749, and poker rake and fees increased by 176 per cent to $5,359.
January recorded 728 new iGaming player registrations across the state, comprised of 313 registrations at Delaware Park, 276 at Dover Downs, and 139 at Harrington.
Denmark’s regulated betting and gaming market grew gross gaming revenue (GGR) by 7 per cent to DKK1.73bn (€232.6m) in the fourth quarter of 2020, despite a decline from the land-based sector due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
With restaurants, gambling arcades and land-based casinos forced to close in December 2020 to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, GGR from gaming machines fell by 20 per cent year-on-year to DKK266m in Q4, while land-based casino GGR was down 23 per cent at DKK69m.
Q4 2020 GROSS GAMING REVENUE COMPARISON (DKK)
Q4 2020 Q4 2019 % Change
Sports Betting 724m 621m 16.5%
Online Casino 666m 573m 16.3%
Gaming Machines 266m 334m (20.3%)
Land-Based Casino 69m 90m (23.1%)
TOTAL 1,726m 1,618m 6.6%
This was offset by a record performance from sports betting, which grew GGR by 16.5 per cent to DKK724m, benefiting from a packed football calendar during the quarter. More than half (51.5 per cent) of sports betting GGR was derived from mobile, with desktop accounting for a further 15 per cent and retail 34 per cent of the total.
Online casino GGR increased by 16 per cent to DKK666m in Q4, with slots representing 74 per cent of the total. Roulette contributed 9 per cent of the total, followed by blackjack at 7 per cent, commission games at 6 per cent and other games the remaining 4 per cent.
Danish gambling regulator Spillemyndigheden also revealed that 25,176 people were registered with the ROFUS self-exclusion system by the end of the year. This comprised 16,918 permanently registered persons and 8,258 temporarily excluded persons, with men accounting for 75.5 per cent of all exclusions.
For the full 2020 year, betting and gaming GGR fell by 9 per cent to DKK5.96bn, with online casino the only sector to record growth as GGR rose 5 per cent to DKK2.45bn.
Sports betting GGR was down 8.5 per cent at DKK2.28bn for the full year, while gaming machines GGR fell by 29 per cent to DKK986mm and GGR from land-based casinos fell by 31.5 per cent to DKK239m.
West Virginia’s licensed casino operators booked $149.8m in combined sports betting and iGaming wagers in January.
Total wagers for the four-week period ended 30 January were down 16 per cent compared to the previous month’s record of $179.2m but higher than a year ago, with the state’s five sportsbooks collecting wagers of $50.7m and the state’s two iGaming operators collecting wagers of $99.1m.
WEST VIRGINIA SPORTS BETTING AND IGAMING WAGERS: JANUARY 2021 (US$)
Retail Sports Online Sports iGaming TOTAL
Charles Town 11,811,980 13,355,128 65,226,101 90,393,209
The Greenbrier 559,725 18,118,600 33,879,991 52,558,316
Mountaineer 3,331,911 1,117,896 — 4,449,806
Mardi Gras 1,416,540 263,808 — 1,680,348
Wheeling 656,997 66,899 — 723,896
TOTAL 17,777,153 32,923,330 99,106,091 149,806,574
Total sports wagers rose 43 per cent year-on-year in January, with retail sports betting contributing $17.8m in wagers and online sports betting accounting for $32.9m.
Penn National Gaming’s Hollywood Casino at Charles Town maintained its market leadership position as sports wagers increased 12 per cent versus a year ago to $25.2m, comprised of $13.4m from DraftKings’ mobile sports betting app and $11.8m from retail.
The biggest growth in January came from The Greenbrier as sports wagers climbed 91 per cent to $18.7m, most of which was derived from mobile sports betting via FanDuel and BetMGM, with retail contributing just $559,725 in wagers.
The Mountaineer was the next biggest operator as sports wagers rose 49 per cent to $4.4m, comprised of retail wagers of $3.3m and online sports wagers of $1.1m from William Hill’s mobile app.
The Mardi Gras Casino generated wagers of $1.7m during the month, $1.4m from retail and $263,808 from the Bet Lucky mobile app, while the sportsbook at Wheeling Island Casino booked $723,896 in wagers, of which $66,899 was generated online by the Betly mobile app.
Neither Mardi Gras nor Wheeling had sports betting operations in the comparable period last year.
Overall, a total of $46.6m was paid out in sports winnings in January, alongside $141,683 in voided bets, leaving the five sportsbook operators with total taxable receipts of just under $4.0m.
Meanwhile, the state’s recently regulated iGaming market generated total wagers of $99.1m during the four-week period.
Hollywood Casino and partner DraftKings generated two-thirds of the total with iGaming wagers of $65.2m during the period, with The Greenbrier contributing $33.9m through the BetMGM online casino.
A total of $96.6m was paid out in iGaming winnings during the month, resulting in revenue of $2.8m for the two licensed operators, split equally between Hollywood Casino and The Greenbrier.
Minnesota Representative Pat Garofalo has introduced a series of bills to license and regulate sport betting.
The bills aim to establish the Minnesota Sports Wagering Commission to license and regulate betting on real sports and esports, with licenses available to one or more bookmakers who would be permitted to contract with a casinos or racetrack to offer bets to players over the age of 18.
HF767 would authorise sports betting at the state’s land-based casinos or racetracks for the first 12 months of regulated sports betting, after which time the commission may issue online authorisation to a bookmaker.
This would be subject to a requirement that the website or application is hosted by a licensed bookmaker under a contract with a tribal casino operator, with tribal-state compacts to be negotiated by the Governor to include sports betting.
The bill does not include license fees, although taxes are set at 6 per cent of net sports betting revenue at a casino or racetrack, rising to 8 per cent on bets placed online.
HF767 was introduced on February 4 and referred to the House Commerce Finance and Policy Committee.
Representative Garofalo’s second proposal, HF769, aims to allow retail sports betting pools at tribal casinos and online, with the bill specifically excluding pool betting from the definition of sports betting.
Sports pools would include parlay bets, card wagers, individual bets, proposition bets, or any other type of wager authorised by the commission on any sporting event, with pool wagers subject to an excise tax of 0.5 per cent.
The final bill, HF778, would extend eligibility for sports pools licensure to racetracks for on-site betting and sets a net revenue tax of 6.75 per cent.
Colorado’s regulated sports betting market hit another record month in December as total wagers from online and retail operations reached $284.6m.
Total wagers increased by 27 per cent compared to the previous month, with the state’s 17 online operators generating wagers of $280.4m in December, and Colorado’s 12 retail operators accounting for the remaining $4.1m in wagers.
Professional American football represented nearly a third of total wagers during the month at $88.2m, with professional basketball the next most popular sport with wagers of $42.9m, followed by NCAA Basketball at $35.2m, NCAA Football with $15.0m and table tennis at $11.0m.
Licensed sports betting operators paid out $267.4m to players in winnings in December, generating gross gaming revenue (GGR) of $17.2m, down 6.5 per cent from November 2020. December’s GGR comprised $16.6m from online sports betting and $592,193 from retail.
As a result, total net sports betting proceeds amounted to $5.7m, a decline of 37 per cent month-on-month, with the state receiving total taxes of $531,490.
Since the opening of Colorado’s regulated sports betting market in May, operators have collected total wagers of $1.19bn, generating taxes for the state of $3.4m.
“Hitting the $1 billion mark is a milestone event for the department, leading us to believe that the trust and competition in the industry are leading bettors from the black market to the regulated market,” said Colorado Division of Gaming director Dan Hartman. “We believe the legal marketplace is having and will continue to have a positive impact on Colorado.”
Colorado Department of Revenue executive director Mark Ferrandino added: “I am thrilled to see the success of Colorado’s regulated sports betting program, especially coming out of a turbulent year.
“As we look to 2021, we are focused on continuing our collaborative stakeholder engagement to remain poised for success.”
Norsk Tipping will see its marketing presence curtailed from the start of 2021 as part of an overhaul of gambling advertising rules in Norway.
From 1 January, the Norwegian Media Authority will have the opportunity to stop TV advertising from overseas gambling companies. From the same date, the Ministry of Culture will also tighten the guidelines for Norsk Tipping and Norsk Rikstoto, limiting their advertising to what is necessary to channel consumers away from unlicensed private operators and towards the two state-owned operators.
The new guidelines will, among other things, mean that the use of tools in Norsk Tipping’s marketing of high profits and money for good causes will be toned down. The new guidelines also increase the requirements for responsible marketing, with all advertising to include contact information for a gambling helpline services.
The introduction of the Norwegian Media Authority’s new tool for stopping gambling advertising on television and subsequent tightening of the guidelines of Norsk Tipping is part of the government’s preventive work against gambling problems. The government said the decision to act came in the wake of the University of Bergen’s ‘Extent of gambling and computer gambling problems in Norway in 2019’ survey which showed an increase in gambling problems compared with the previous survey from 2015, in part due to the impact of advertising.
“It is serious that gambling problems in the population increase, and we are working on a number of measures to reverse this trend,” said Abid Raja, Minister of Culture.
“The possibility of stopping TV advertising from foreign gambling companies is an important measure in the work of preventing gambling problems. With less gambling advertising on TV, we can also tighten the guidelines for Norsk Tipping’s marketing.”
Earlier this month, Norsk Tipping introduce a series of temporary measures that will run throughout December and January designed to reduce spending and playing time.
The operator reduced the maximum monthly loss limit on its high-risk games by 25%, with customers only permitted to lose up to NOK7,500 (£634/€707/$845) each month when playing KongKasino, eFlax, Bingoria and Yezz.
Norsk Tipping also increased the mandatory break players must take after playing continuously for one hour, with this rising from 90 seconds to 15 minutes.
“We know that gambling problems are increasing in the population, and that December is our biggest gambling month,” Norsk Tipping chief executive Åsne Havnelid said at the time.
“The measures against novel coronavirus (Covid-19) mean that more people can experience spending more time alone than they usually do during the Christmas month. For vulnerable players, this can lead to more gambling, and we want to prevent that.”
At the same time, the Norwegian government announced that it will commit an additional NOK15m to problem gambling efforts in the country.
The new funding came after the Norwegian Industry Association for Online Gaming (Norsk Bransjeforening for Onlinespill/NBO) in October called for a complete rethink on rules relating to the sector in its official response to the country’s proposed new gambling legislation.
According to the NBO, the bill, which seeks to unify the existing Lottery Act, Gambling Act and Totalisator Act and maintain Norsk Tipping and Norsk Rikstoto’s monopolies in the market, would mean poor standards of protection and value for customers.
Instead, the NBO advocates a licensing model for private operators, with a tax rate of 15%, which it said would result in an expected channelling rate of more than 95%.
Pennsylvania broke its sports betting and online gambling revenue records in November, though declining land-based revenue led to a year-on-year drop in the state’s monthly total.
Total gambling revenue in November amounted to $283.3m (£209.3m/€231.1m), down 2.7% from $292.1m in November 2019 and also 11.5% lower than the $320.2m posted in October this year, according to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) figures.
The decline came despite another strong performance from the sports betting vertical, with revenue after promotional credits reaching a record $37.4m, up 153.7% and surpassing the previous record of $36.8m set in October this year.
Online sports betting accounted for $31.2m of this total, compared to $6.2m from retail wagering.
Players spent a total of $491.9m on sports betting in November, an increase of 55.4% on last year, but short of the record ($525.8m) set in October 2020.