With fresh record Grand Canyon State falls just short of becoming ninth U.S. state with $500 million handle in a single month, according to PlayAZ analysts
(LAS VEGAS) — Sportsbooks fell just short of making Arizona the ninth state to generate $500 million in wagering over a single month, capping an impressive debut with $499 million in wagers in December. With the third straight month of at least $466 million in betting, Arizona continues to benefit from good timing and an enthusiastic reception, according to analysts from PlayAZ.com, which tracks the fledgling Arizona gaming market.
“The NFL season kept wagering high even as sportsbooks settled into something resembling normal after a surge of promotional spending early on,” said C.J. Pierre, lead analyst for PlayAZ.com. “Importantly, bettor enthusiasm remains high and Arizonans will become more comfortable with less conventional products such as in-game betting. That should help keep activity brisk through March Madness.”
Arizona’s online and retail sportsbooks drew a record $499.2 million in wagers in December, up 7% from $466.7 million in bets generated in November, according to official data released Tuesday by the Arizona Department of Gaming. December’s handle topped October’s $486.1 million, the state’s previous highwater mark. Bettors averaged $16.1 million per day over the 31 days of December, up from $15.6 million in wagers per day in November.
Arizona sportsbooks won $39.8 million in gross sports betting revenue, which was down 23% from $51.4 million in November. Sportsbooks’ 8% hold remained among the highest rates in the U.S. in December, and the highest among the 10 largest markets. After $21.3 million in promotional credits, the state taxed $17.3 million in gross event wagering receipts. That produced $1.7 million in taxes for the state.
Through four months, Arizona’s sportsbooks generated:
- $1.7 billion in wagering
- $161.1 million in gross revenue
- $6.0 million in privilege fees for the state
“New York broke many of Arizona’s records after it debuted mobile sportsbooks, but that shouldn’t diminish just how well the state has performed so far,” said Eric Ramsey, an analyst for the PlayUSA.com Network, which includes PlayAZ.com. “We expected Arizona to do well when sports betting launched in September, but the market continues to match the highest expectations with results that rival more mature markets, some with much larger populations.”
Online sportsbooks in Arizona generated $494.5 million in wagers, or 99.1% of the state’s handle in December. Retail sportsbooks took in the state’s remaining $4.7 million in bets.
DraftKings continued to hold the market lead with $146.0 million in bets in December, all online. That was down slightly from $148.7 million in November. The operator won $11.3 million from December’s bets, down from $12.5 million in November.
FanDuel crept closer to its rival with $131.1 million in wagers, including $128.5 million online. December’s handle was up from $118.0 million in November and created $11.1 million in gross revenue. BetMGM ($103.8 million in wagering, all online; $9.1 million in gross revenue) and Caesars ($76.0 million in wagering, including $73.9 million online; $5.3 million in gross revenue) were the next closest to the online leaders.
With a slew of launches in the first two months of the year, Arizona now has 17 online operators. But one Arizona lawmaker, Sen. Sally Ann Gonzales, recently called into question the fairness of the state’s sports betting law for Native American tribes.
“Arizona is still a very young market, and no launch is completely smooth,” Pierre said. “But most of the state’s operators are off to a great start, even as promotional spending and other early-market hallmarks begin to settle.”
For more information and analysis on regulated sports betting in Arizona, visit PlayAZ.com/news.
Contact: Zack Hall, Catena Media, [email protected]