The little state of New Hampshire always seems to follow the trends of the entire US legal sports betting scene and acts as a good barometer of just where the industry on the whole stands, month-to-month. The latest example comes from the sports betting numbers out of the state for the month of March.
New Hampshire sportsbooks were able to post a modest increase in overall handle during the month of March and increase profits thanks to the lucrative and much-anticipated NCAA Basketball tournament. The state’s sports betting figures also reveal an enormous spike year-over-year and in turn expose just how badly the industry was affected by the 2020 COVID-related shutdown of global sports leagues and local casinos.
Looking In on March’s Numbers
It was widely expected that March would provide a nice bounce back for New Hampshire casinos after a traditional and acceptable slide during the month of February. According to the New Hampshire Lottery, sportsbooks in the Granite State reported $55.8 million, up 9.4% from February’s $51 million.
New Hampshire’s mobile betting platform unsurprisingly was responsible for 79.6% of the overall legal sports betting handle, or $44.4 million. That’s up a modest 3.4% from February’s $43 million mobile betting handle. $11.4 million of New Hampshire’s overall betting intake came from its retail sector.
March’s revenues showed an even more impressive month-over-month spike. Gross Gaming Revenue for New Hampshire in March was reportedly $4.3 million, a 138% increase from February’s $1.8 million profit-haul. Off of that, the state’s tax take was $1.9 million, which also represents a 138% increase from the $769,387 in taxes collected in February.
It is difficult to add up the losses incurred by businesses from the coronavirus crisis that has decimated societies and businesses around the world. But sports betting regulations in the US scene allows us at least a glimpse into the overall effect of the pandemic on that industry every month.
March 2020 saw the postponement of global sports leagues, the shuttering of casinos and the pause of life as we knew it within the US. As a result of the cancellation of March Madness, among other sporting events, sportsbooks took a major hit.
New Hampshire’s total sports betting handle for March 2020 was $8.8 million, compared to the $55.8 million last month. Sports betting revenues for March 2020 came in at a paltry $394,229 – a far cry from the $4.3 million in profits the New Hampshire Lottery reported in March 2021.
Only One Game in Town
New Hampshire’s legal sports betting scene is unique in the sense that there is just one online operator currently taking bets in the state. One of the two DFS behemoths is the sole operator in the state, and it had a few issues during the month of March during a mitigation effort from Kambi to SBTech technology.
It is unclear whether or not the state will be open in the future to some competition for the DFS giant for mobile betting but so far, there hasn’t seemed to be a need. That said, competition within the space has been a boon for other participating legal sports betting jurisdictions.
The state of New York obviously likes what New Hampshire has done – it is looking to adopt a similar single-vendor mobile sports betting model and is secretly touting New Hampshire’s successes as the reason for doing so.
New Hampshire ranks 41st in terms of population with about 1.36 million residents. There is no way that they will ever approach the numbers of New Jersey, Nevada or Pennsylvania with regard to their sports betting handle.
But the Granite State has done a good job in carving out their own little niche within the US legal sports betting market. While more competition may increase the state’s overall take, status quo seems to fit where New Hampshire hopes to go in terms of their sports betting industry.
Expect New Hampshire to keep plugging along with a sports betting platform that has served them well so far. As far as changes go, none are presently in the cards thanks to lawmakers’ overall satisfaction with their legal sports betting scene.