Mobile Behind The Surge In Indiana Sports Wagering

The Sportsbook at Ameristar casino

Hoosiers bet nearly $92 million in October, the first full month of mobile betting.

That figure is almost triple that of September, when the first legal sports bets were placed at the state’s casinos and off-track betting facilities.

Clearly the advent of mobile wagering, which has enabled bettors to place bets online via web browsers or via mobile devices from anywhere inside state lines, has been responsible for the 160% surge in handle.

Locals’ love for betting on the NFL (especially the Colts) and college football – the Fighting Irish have a huge following – has also played its part, with 45% ($41.1 million) of the total handle being placed on the sport.

Revenue was up too at $11.5 million, from September’s $8.5 million, and that generated close to $1.1 million for the state, which taxes sports betting gross revenue at 9.5% – lower than other states where sports betting is legal.

Even so, in two months with legalized sports wagering Indiana has raked in a little over $1.9 million in taxes, and other states that continue to sit on the sidelines are clearly missing out on a lucrative revenue stream.

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DraftKings holding onto the lion’s share

Both DraftKings and BetRivers (Rush Street Interactive) launched their mobile apps almost simultaneously at the beginning of the month, but the former has raced into the early lead with  $39.3 million in bets – BetRivers fell way short at $6.3 million.

Brand recognition and a quality app, that gets full marks from us, has clearly helped the daily fantasy sports giant grab the lion’s share of handle, with existing players able to link their DFS and sportsbook accounts.

FanDuel, which launched its app late in the month, made a promising start with $2.4 million in bets and it surely won’t be long before it demonstrates similar strength in Indiana to that which has led to its market-leading positions in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

Chicagoland influx driving casino handle

It’s no coincidence that those casinos closest to the Windy City are seeing the most betting action. Ameristar Casino East Chicago, the partner of DraftKings in the state and a 30 minutes drive from downtown Chicago, generated by far the highest wagering total in October, with $46. 2 million.

The next highest was Horseshoe Hammond, which sits just 18 miles from downtown Chicago, with $10.7 million.

Illinois has been slow to implement legal sports betting, with still no timetable for launch, and frustrated residents are clearly happy to make the short hop into Indiana – even a parking lot just inside the state line will do – to get some action.

Here’s how the rest of the state’s casinos performed last month:

French Lick Resort ($7.1 million);

Blue Chip Casino ($6.9 million);

Hollywood Lawrenceburg ($6.9 million);

Harrah’s Hoosier Park ($6.2 million);

Indiana Grand ($3.8 million);

Tropicana Evansville ($2 million);

Caesars Southern Indiana ($1.2 million);

Belterra Casino ($812,130).

So legal sports wagering in Indiana is thriving and the numbers are only going to be continue to swell now that three sportsbook apps are up and running, with the college basketball season opening providing another likely boost.

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