Pennsylvania Sportsbooks Post Record Handle in October

Keystone State’s betting operators record the biggest handle to date at $829 million as month-to-month and year-over-year numbers continue to show sustained growth.
Pennsylvania Sportsbooks Post Record Handle in October
November 30, 2023

Sports betting is alive and well in Pennsylvania, and that’s been proven through the month of October, as state’s betting operators recorded the biggest monthly handle to date, with a total of $829 million wagered and $73.6 million in revenues made.

This new record beat the one previously set in October 2022, which stood at $797.1 million in total wagers made by over $30 million, proving that there is still room for growth in Pennsylvania sports betting.

While FanDuel and DraftKings, two of the state’s biggest betting operators, posted the bulk of these numbers, others like BetMGM, Caesars, BetRivers, Barstool, and betParx all contributed their fair share to make October 2023 the best month in PA betting history.

Breaking Down the Numbers

Overall, the Pennsylvania sports betting market saw $829 million wagered by its players, a massive 14% increase from September and a 4% year-over-year increase compared to October last year.

The operators managed to pull in $73.6 million in revenues, a 20% year-over-year increase, representing an 8.9% overall hold.

Of the $73.6 million in revenues, $48 million represented taxable revenue, while a further $25.5 million was paid out in promotional credits, creating a total of $16.4 million in taxes paid by the PA sports betting operators to the state.

Of the $829 million in sports wagers made in October 2023, a massive 93% was made online, suggesting that retail sports betting is only a minor part of the overall betting industry and that PA bettors prefer to do their business through the popular PA sports betting apps.

As expected, it was FanDuel that once again posted the biggest numbers, generating $328.4 million in handle and $29.1 million in revenues with an 8.9% hold and $6.5 million in taxes paid.

The closest competitor, DraftKings, came second in the race, recording $258.2 million in handle, but over $28 million in revenues, as its superior 10.9% hold was able to nearly outdo FanDuel in the most important statistic. DraftKings ended up paying $6.8 million in taxes in October, some $300k more than FanDuel.

Of other standout operators, BetMGM was able to record $53 million in handle and $3.9 million in revenue, while Caesars’s $39 million in handle translated into just $297k in revenue thanks to a record low hold of 0.7% in October.

ESPN Bet Pennsylvania a New Contender in the Market?

While it is way too early to speak on any definitive numbers in regards to the newly launched ESPN Bet Pennsylvania, it is clear that the new app will be a significant contender in the PA market in the years to come.

With PENN Entertainment now shifting focus away from Barstool Sportsbook and towards ESPN Bet, the performance numbers for the app in the early months of 2024 will give us some idea of whether or not ESPT Bet can do what it set out to do in catching the big two in betting markets across the US.

With FanDuel and DraftKings reigning supreme across the country’s legal betting markets, ESPN Bet will be looking to use its reach and brand in the sporting world to content with the two companies, which should spell good news for the overall PA sports betting market in 2024 and beyond.

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