On 21 January, online sports betting went live in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Right after the launching, more people started to wager than the state could have imagined. So, it might not come as big of a surprise that the first full month of legal gambling was a huge hit. But did anyone expect the Virginia betting revenue to peak this high? Well, probably not.
Virginia is unquestionably on its way to becoming a full-service gambling state. With online sports betting going live, and with the construction of several land-based casinos it stands a fair chance to do so. It is true, that is still an early stage, but the records of revenue from the first full month of legal sports betting are nothing but promising. With 265,8 million dollars in wagers, Virginia has the second-largest sum of betting revenue for any state in its first full month. The only one beating them was Michigan with 302 million dollars in wagers. So, what they reached is already remarkable. The question is: how did they manage to do reach such revenue? Is it something they can maintain in a long run?
Peaking betting revenue in Virginia
As the Washington Examiner reported: ”in Virginia’s first full month of legal gambling, the commonwealth’s sportsbooks took in about $265.8 million in wagers, which is the second-largest sum for any state in its first full month.” In January, they reached 58.9 million dollars, but that was only a 10-day month for wagering. In February – with only its 28 days – this number was more than quadrupled. If we take the per-day amount of money spent on sports betting, it nearly doubled between these months. In January it was 5.4 million dollars, while 9.5 million dollars in February. And with these numbers, The Old Dominion is a winner! This is the largest per-day jump from one month to another – compared to any other state. So, probably most online sportsbook sites in the US, like Intertops, will try to get a license in the state, since it is a great business!
How did they reach this betting revenue in Virginia?
Firstly, the charm of novelty certainly has a huge part in this. Wagers of The Commonwealth were probably looking forward to gratifying their online sports betting needs for a long time. So, when they had the chance, of course, they went for it immediately! Another thing is the attitude of the operators. The legalized sites have been luring more and more players with starter bonuses. Jessica Welman, an analyst for PlayVirignia said: “Ultimately, the goal in these early days for sportsbooks is to engage sports bettors, introduce them to their product, and begin building relationships that will act as the foundation,” Another this is the Super Bowl, of course. That one event garnered 19.5 million dollars alone! We also should not forget about the current restriction that encourages people to spend more time at home. And as such, they spend more time wagering on online gambling sites in the US.
What is the next step?
“The enthusiasm from bettors will eventually settle down, and sportsbooks will pull back a bit from this heavy promotional period.” – as Welman predicts. We have seen it before. There is always a bit of a setback after the peaks of the first couple of months. However, with time, operators can adapt more to the needs of Virginian wagers. Also, there will be more and more online sportsbooks in the US, such as Intertops, that will get licenses in the state. You know: more options always get more attention! And since the state took in more than $300,000 in tax revenue, they will probably be more than happy to quicken the legalization processes.