Illinois Sees May Sports Betting Decline
The Illinois Gaming Board has finally released the May sports betting report, and there was a decrease in both handle and revenue as expected.
This follows a trend that has been set in most states throughout the US, but Illinois still maintained its place among the industry leaders.
In May, the total sports betting handle in Illinois was $507.3 million, but that was a decrease of 5.6% from April. Illinois has seen a sharp decline in the total betting handle since more than $633 million was wagered in March of this year.
The remote registration option was removed in early April, and this could be contributing to the drop in the total handle. May is also typically a slow month for professional sports, which hurts the overall numbers.
The drop in the total handle affected the sports betting revenue numbers as well as the tax revenue that was brought in for the state. The total revenue in May was $36.2 million, and the tax revenue was just $5.34 million.
Even though remote registration is no longer an option in Illinois, online sports betting still accounted for over 95% of the total handle. Illinois has built up a strong base of customers since launching in March 2020, and the lack of retail betting is a result of no options in Chicago.
Despite the drop in total betting handle in May, Illinois remained the second-biggest sports betting market for the month. The gap between Illinois and New Jersey is still large, but the Land of Lincoln is outperforming the other competition.
New Jersey went over the $800 million in total sports betting handle yet again, and Illinois is not going to catch them at any time. This was the second straight month that Illinois has surpassed both Nevada and Pennsylvania.
Nevada used to be the only sports betting option in the US, but it came in third place in May with a total handle of $477.2 million. Pennsylvania saw a decline of nearly seven percent, bringing in just under $450 million in wagers in May.
DraftKings Takes the Lead
BetRivers was the early online sports betting leader in Illinois, but it wasn’t long before DraftKings and FanDuel took control. Those two operators have been jockeying for position at the top over the last few months, and it was DraftKings that led the way in March.
DraftKings has partnered with the Casino Queen in East St. Louis, and the total betting handle for that operator in May was $170.1 million. FanDuel was a distant second with a total handle of $156.2 million in May.
BetRivers is the clear leader in the state when it comes to retail sports betting, and its location plays a role in the numbers. There was over $12 million wagered at the Rivers Casino, which is located in Des Plaines.
Barstool and PointsBet were in a close race for the fourth spot in the state, with less than $1 million separating the two operators. William Hill is the other online sports betting option, and the handle at that operator was less than $9 million.
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