New York’s online sportsbooks slowed to less than $1.4bn wagers in April, the lowest volume since New York launched online sports betting in January.
A slowdown is expected in April, the first in a seasonal ebb in sports betting that should last until football season begins, according to analysts from PlayNY.com, which tracks developments in the New York gaming market.
“Without football or the opening rounds of the NCAA Tournament to spur interest, April is always the first month of a slower period for the industry,” said Mike Mazzeo, lead analyst for PlayNY.com. “The NBA Playoffs were the main catalyst in April, though the early exit by the Brooklyn Nets didn’t help. And the Final Four was a boost. Over the next few months, baseball, major tournament golf, and the Stanley Cup Playoffs will keep bettors engaged, even if at a lower volume than during football season.”
New York’s online sportsbooks accepted $1.4bn in wagers in April, down 15. per cent from $1.6bn in March, according to official data released Monday by the New York State Gaming Commission. That is the lowest handle yet for sportsbooks, slipping below the $1.5bn in wagers gathered in February.
Online sportsbooks averaged $46.4m in wagers per day over the course of April, down from $52.8m in bets per day in March. Retail data was not immediately available from the state on Monday.
Sportsbooks still won $104.1m in gross revenue from April’s bets, down just 8.9 per cent from the $114.3m in gross revenue won in March. The month’s win yielded $53.1m in tax revenue.
After more than three months of expansion, sportsbooks’ focus will now shift. While football generates significant volume and an opportunity to expand to new customers, sports like golf and baseball tend to be more profitable per dollar bet for sportsbooks.
“Sportsbooks tend to be more aggressive with promotions during football season, as they try to expand their customer footprint,” said Eric Ramsey, an analyst for the PlayUSA.com Network, which includes PlayNY.com. “The summer months do offer a chance to reach new customers with a different roster of sports. But the industry as a whole will taper some of its promotional spending. And the longer odds of summer favorites like baseball parlay betting and golf tournaments are profitable despite not drawing nearly as much interest as a weekend of football.”
FanDuel accounted for 43 per cent of the online market lead with $599.5m in bets, which was down from $673.1m in March. Those bets produced $63.6m in gross revenue. DraftKings was second with $327.1m in wagers, or 24 per cent of the month’s online volume, down from $414.5m in March. The operator won $19.6m off those bets, down from $22.9m in March.
Caesars was third with $215.7m in wagers, down from $273.4m in March. Gross revenue slipped to $11.8m from $21.6m in March.
“After an interesting first few months, New York’s industry is settling into a familiar pattern with FanDuel and DraftKings dominating the sports betting market,” Ramsey said. “FanDuel, in particular, continues to invest heavily in its home state, and that effort is paying off with a market share north of 40 per cent.”