It isn't necessarily news to report that the US Sports Betting industry has seen some serious growth since the May 2018 Supreme Court repeal of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). But newly released numbers show that both revenues and handles from sports betting have increased exponentially.
Nine states reported sports betting financial information during a period stretching from January 2019 to January 2020. Those states saw revenues triple over that span, proving just how popular sports betting in the US was over that time and just how much potential the industry has going forward.
Breaking down the numbers
The rise of the US sports betting industry has been the theme with regard to the figures released in a recent report. Between January 2019 and January 2020 revenues spiked from $41.9 million in 2019 to $133 million in 2020. That represents an astounding 217% increase for the first full year of legalized sports betting in the US.
Total handle also increased dramatically over a one-year period. The total amount wagered by Americans in 2019 was a healthy $13 billion, a 50% rise from 2018 when Americans wagered $6.6 billion. The total January 2020 handle alone for the nine states reporting was $1.74 billion, up from $1 billion in January 2019.
Even if we omitted numbers from states that contributed to January 2020 but weren't legal in January 2019, we would still see some impressive growth in the industry. Minus Iowa and Indiana, the overall January handle would still exceed $1.51 billion, a 51% increase over the one-year span and the revenues would still eclipse $117 million – a 179% increase over 2019.
Reasons for growth
The growth of the sports betting industry has been remarkable considering there are only 15 states presently operating legal sports betting platforms. Just nine contributed to the statistics above so of course, with more states legalizing in the next few months, the numbers are bound to balloon.
The emergence of a strong mobile betting platform has also been huge for the legal sports betting industry. It consistently generates over 80% of competing states' handles – in 2019 an estimated 7 of 10 bets placed in the US came via mobile means.
Also, organic growth has increased hold percentages for existing platforms. Those hold percentages jumped from 4.17% in 2019 to 7.66% in 2020, helping revenues rise.
The future of legal sports betting is bright
At the end of 2019, there were 14 states with a legalized betting platform. Conservatively that number could grow to 20 with Tennessee, North Carolina, Michigan and Illinois already in various stages of their rollouts. Estimates have those four states alone contributing about $6 billion per year to the overall US handle, $416 million in revenue and $50 million in tax contributions to their respective states.
And yet, there is still no real timeframe for the three largest population centers going live – California, Florida and Texas. If even one of those states launches in 2020, over half of the US population will be able to lay down a sports bet legally. Until that time, after Tennessee, North Carolina, Michigan, and Illinois launch, approximately 34.1% of US citizens will be able to bet on their favorite team.
The growth of the legal sports betting industry in the US has been a fast-moving train with little reason to think the momentum will slow anytime soon. To say that the state of the Sports Betting Industry in the US is strong is an understatement indeed with analysts hinting at more exponential growth in 2020. The numbers at this time next year could be off the charts.