The amount trails only the $691 million generated in March 2022, though this year’s total marked the fifth time Arizona sportsbooks have handled at least $600 million worth of accepted bets. Handle was up 5.8% compared to February, when Glendale hosting Super Bowl LVII helped nudge the total to over $609 million.
Total gross revenue before any deductions totaled $53.5 million, with the adjusted gross revenue prior to deductions coming to nearly $53 million. Adjusted revenue after promotional credits were deducted and negative AGR was zeroed out resulted in $37.1 million being eligible for tax purposes, with the state claiming close to $3.7 million in privilege fees. The 8.3% hold on total gross revenue for March — still notably above the 7% industry standard — was third-lowest among 29 states offering commercial wagering for the month.
Arizona’s handle of $1.85 billion for the first quarter of 2023 was 5.7% higher than the same period in 2022, while the $82.3 million in taxable revenue was up 82.2% versus the first three months of last year. The state has collected nearly $8.2 million worth of tax receipts, up $3.7 million from the comparable span in 2022.
The report also closed the book on a record-setting quarter for national handle and revenue, though those figures were enhanced by Ohio launching on Jan. 1 and Massachusetts kicking off mobile wagering just before the NCAA Tournament in March.
National wagering for the first three months of 2023 totaled nearly $31.8 billion, while operators claimed close to $2.85 billion in gross revenue for a hold just under 9%. State taxes totaled $528.7 million, with New York accounting for more than 40% of that amount — $214.6 million — by virtue of its 51% rate levied on mobile operator revenue.
FanDuel tops in handle, but bettors thrive
FINAL March Top 10 #SportsBetting handles by state:
1 New York $1.79B
2 Illinois $1.07B
3 New Jersey $1.03B
4 Nevada $830.5M
5 Ohio $738.6M
6 Pennsylvania $723.5M
7 ARIZONA $644.76M <-NEW
8 Massachusetts $568.1M
9 Virginia $511.6M
10 Colorado $494.4M#GamblingTwitter
— Chris Altruda (@AlTruda73) June 13, 2023
While FanDuel spent most of the first quarter beating up the sports betting public practically everywhere nationwide, the mobile powerhouse was stymied again in the desert in March. It did reap more than $21.9 million in gross revenue while setting a state record for handle at $254.9 million, but the 8.6% hold marked the first time since February and March of last year FanDuel failed to post double-digit win rates in back-to-back months in Arizona.
Still, FanDuel remains the only mobile operator in the Grand Canyon State to eclipse $20 million in monthly gross revenue, accomplishing the feat for the sixth time overall. It also had the most promotional offerings of any online operator in March, awarding more than $5.5 million of the $16.2 million in credits received by the public.
DraftKings could take solace in setting its own gross revenue record in Arizona, narrowly clearing $15 million for the first time and posting an 8.9% win rate from $168.8 million worth of accepted bets. Much like FanDuel, DraftKings had deep pockets for promotional play, awarding $4.3 million worth of credits in March.
BetMGM had a strong bounce-back for March, as its $9.6 million in gross revenue was 81.5% higher compared to February. Its 10.9% hold was the highest among the five mobile operators who had eight-figure handles, while its handle was a comfortable No. 3 in the state at $87.5 million.
Caesars Sports also regrouped from a rough February, with its $4.9 million in gross revenue a four-fold increase. Its 8.7% win rate was more than six percentage points higher than the previous month, while the state was able to claim 10% of of nearly $3.7 million in adjusted revenue.
Local sportsbook Desert Diamond showed staying power, topping Barstool Sportsbook for the No. 5 spot in handle for the second consecutive month, though the $28.1 million in accepted wagers was 35.8% lower than February. Bettors enjoyed the wagers they did make in March, coming out nearly $1.3 million ahead. It is the second-largest monthly loss in state history, trailing the $3.2 million hit DraftKings took last June.
Barstool’s handle slipped below $20 million for the first time since October, but its 8.4% hold meant that its nearly $1.7 million in gross revenue was almost six times higher than February. It was the third-highest revenue haul for the PENN Entertainment book and the highest since a record $2.1 million in November 2021.
Desert Diamond wasn’t the only mobile book to finish March in the red, as Unibet paid out nearly $53,000 above its $684,178 handle. It was the fourth consecutive losing month for Unibet, which has lost over $85,000 to the public on $2.6 million worth of wagers in that span.
More national notes
All-time Top 10 #SportsBetting handles post-PASPA (thru May in CAPS):
1 New Jersey $37.5B
2 Nevada $32.5B
3 NEW YORK $24.6B
4 Illinois $22.6B
5 Pennsylvania $21.6B
6 INDIANA $12.3B
7 Colorado $12.1B
8 Michigan $10.5B
9 Virginia $10.02B
10 Arizona $9.63B (Mar)#GamblingTwitter
— Chris Altruda (@AlTruda73) June 13, 2023
March’s total handle nationwide was $11.25 billion, coming within $243 million of January’s all-time record. The $1.07 billion in gross operator revenue topped January’s short-lived standard by $472,236, while the $971.5 million in taxable revenue was an all-time high by more than $49.7 million.
Those lofty revenue numbers generated more than $204 million in state taxes, also setting a new monthly benchmark by $13.8 million. Through the first three months of the year, 72 of the 87 state revenue reports published for sports wagering showed a hold above the industry standard of 7%, with 34 of them 10% or higher.