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US – New Jersey sportsbooks continue bounce back in September with new revenue record

By - 16 October 2020

New Jersey’s sportsbooks capitalised on an unprecedented confluence of major US sports to set yet another all-jurisdiction record with nearly $750m in September. And with the record, the Garden State’s handle year-to-date has surpassed the first nine months of 2019, a remarkable trajectory considering major sports were shut down for months.

“September was a once-in-a-lifetime moment on the sports calendar when all four major US sports were playing meaningful games all at once, which was obviously a boon for sportsbooks,” said Dustin Gouker, lead analyst at PlayNJ.com. “The growth seen over the last two months will likely level off once the sports schedule returns to normal. But it’s clear New Jersey’s sports betting industry is setting a new floor.”

Wagers at New Jersey’s online and retail sportsbooks soared to $748.6m in September, up 68 per cent from $445.6m in September 2019 and easily surpassing the all-jurisdiction record of $668m set by New Jersey just last month. New Jersey sportsbooks have now collected $3.3bn in bets through the first nine months of 2020, up from $2.96bn through the corresponding months in 2019.

The state’s sportsbooks have now collected $9.1bn in wagers since the industry launched in June 2018, surpassing yet another milestone.

September’s bets produced $45.1m in gross operator revenue, up 14.1 per cent from $37.9m in September 2019. Those revenues yielded $5.6m in state taxes.

In August, New Jersey generated nearly $200m more than Nevada’s $474.9m handle, and appears poised to outpace the nation’s No. 2 market significantly yet again. New Jersey’s sportsbooks took in a whopping $159.5m in football bets in September. But bettors also placed another $208.3m on “other” sports, a classification that includes hockey, $115.3m on baseball, and $98.8m on basketball.

“Bringing all the major sports together at once enabled New Jersey to show off its unique ability to attract significant action on a wide variety of sports,” Mr. Gouker said. “New Jersey is less event-driven and football commands a smaller share of the overall handle than Nevada, which is an obvious benefit under the current circumstances.”

Online bets accounted for 90.7 per cent, or $678.7m, of September’s handle. That was up from 90.1 per cent in August and 84 per cent in September 2019. FanDuel Sportsbook/PointsBet topped the market with $25.1m in gross revenue, up from $17.6m in August. FanDuel was followed in revenue by: Resorts Digital/DraftKings/Fox Bet ($4.8m, down from $10m in August), BetMGM/Borgata ($3.7m, up from $3.3m), Ocean Casino/William Hill ($2.3m, up from $1.2m), Monmouth/William Hill/Sugarhouse/TheScore ($2.3m, up from $1.7m) and Hard Rock/Bet365/Unibet ($947,986, up from $530,136).

Struggling retail sportsbooks showed modest improvement, generating $69.8m in bets, up from $66m in August. FanDuel Sportsbook at The Meadowlands once again topped retail books with $3.1m in revenue.

“September’s results hint at a $1bn month someday soon, which would’ve been impossible to fathom two years ago,” said Eric Ramsey, analyst for PlayNJ.com. “As we can see with Unibet’s recent launch, online sportsbooks will continue to be where we see growth and where operators will continue to invest.”

New Jersey online casinos and poker rooms continued their place as the industry’s most consistent performer in September with a near-record $87.6m in revenue, up 113 per cent from $41.1m in September 2020. September’s revenue injected $13.2m into state coffers, giving New Jersey $103m in taxes from online casinos and poker so far this year.

Now the industry has a bigger number in sight — $950m in annual revenue.

Through the first three quarters of 2020, online gambling has generated $685.6m, up 102.2 per cent from $339m through the first nine months of 2019. The industry would have to average $88.1m per month, only a slight uptick, over the final three months of 2020 to reach $950m for the year.

“Nearly $1bn in revenue is a staggering figure to think about, and every dollar has been vital in keeping New Jersey’s gaming industry afloat during a difficult year,” Mr. Ramsey said. “The growth in online revenue has begun to flatten after a spring surge, but the importance of online gambling to the overall health of the industry continues to grow.”

Online casinos and poker generated $2.9m a day over the 30 days of September, breaking the record $2.83m a day produced in August. Revenue from online casinos alone was $85.1m, up from $84.7m in August. Online casino games have now generated $2.01m in revenue since launching in November 2013. Online poker produced $2.6m in September revenue, down from $3m in August. The Golden Nugget’s market dominance continued with $26m in September, down from $27.7m. Borgata was second with $19.8m.

Caption: FanDuel Sportsbook at The Meadowlands

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