Indiana Beats Record For Sports Betting Handle In A Single Month

Indiana just hit a new sports betting record.

According to the latest report from the Indiana Gaming Commission, Hoosiers wagered over $355 million on sports throughout September.

January 2021’s $348 million handle was the previous record holder.

September was another month of growth for Indiana’s industry, and things won’t be slowing down anytime soon. With football back in full swing, the numbers should keep climbing over the next handful of months.

Indiana September 2021 sports betting handle

September was a great month for Indiana, especially considering that August’s handle was only at $215 million.

That massive leap in the betting numbers also led to record sports betting revenue for a single month. Sportsbooks took home $33.8 million worth of adjusted gross revenue during September, which broke January 2021’s previous all-time high of $29.3 million.

The record revenue translated into $3.2 million worth of taxes for the state.

As always, the majority of the state’s wagers were placed online.

Licensee Online Brand(s) Total Handle Online Handle Retail Handle Gross Revenue State Tax
Ameristar East Chicago DraftKings | theScore Bet $138,468,042 $133,459,483 $5,008,559 $8,306,501 $794,308
Blue Chip FanDuel $78,136,462 $77,231,138 $905,324 $10,723,287 $1,018,714
Hollywood Lawrenceburg PointsBet | Barstool $38,614,649 $27,091,061 $11,523,588 $4,948,407 $493,314
Belterra BetMGM | Betway $38,287,749 $37,667,397 $620,352 $4,749,167 $451,190
Harrah’s Hoosier Park Caesars $35,337,258 $30,662,296 $4,674,962 $1,412,498 $184,400
French Lick BetRivers $9,357,058 $8,948,954 $408,104 $660,702 $62,806
Horseshoe Hammond Unibet $5,142,770 $950,588 $4,192,182 $568,208 $64,359
Rising Star TwinSpires | WynnBet $4,222,972 $4,117,333 $105,639 $428,730 $40,752
Caesars Southern Indiana $2,042,937 $0 $2,042,937 $348,009 $36,374
Tropicana Evansville $1,428,747 $0 $1,428,747 $272,478 $20,221
Indiana Grand $4,386,538 $0 $4,386,538 $889,120 $84,525
Total $355,425,184 $320,128,251 $35,296,933 $33,307,106 $3,250,964

Football is the king of the hill

It’ll come as no surprise to frequent gamblers, but football was the most popular sport for betting in Indiana throughout September.

The state’s legal online sportsbooks took in over $148.5 million of football wagers last month. That was a massive increase from August’s $13.8 million worth of bets.

August might have had NFL preseason games, but the real thing was there to bump the numbers up in September.

Sportsbooks are also trying new angles to get gamblers betting on football. Companies like Caesars and Wynn Resorts are partnering up with the Colts to try and find an edge in the market.

Toss in plenty of college football betting, and Hoosiers took full advantage of the sport’s return.

Football is back at its spot atop the podium, but baseball is still holding its own.

  • Football: $148.5 million
  • Basketball: $5.2 million
  • Baseball: $52.8 million
  • Parlay: $91.9 million
  • Other: $52.2 million

Baseball’s handle could hold steady for now since the MLB calendar is starting to get interesting. With postseason action to bet on, the latest MLB playoff odds could keep fans busy.

Caesars Sportsbook gaining on BetMGM

Indiana has had the same top-three operators for months on end. That might finally be changing in the near future.

BetMGM routinely owns the third spot on the sports betting podium, but Caesars Sportsbook is threatening to take that away.

It’s only been two months since Caesars made its debut in the Hoosier State, and the sportsbook is already the fourth-most popular option in Indiana.

Comparatively, BetMGM’s $37 million September handle was still ahead of the $30.6 million haul from Caesars.

However, at the rate things are going, that lead isn’t going to last for long.

BetMGM had a solid 41% handle increase from August to September. Caesars jumped by almost 82%.

That shrinking gap will be something to keep an eye on in the coming months as both companies fight for their own piece of Indiana’s market share.

DraftKings more popular than FanDuel

Speaking of gaps, DraftKings is finally starting to open up a big handle lead against its chief rival FanDuel.

Hoosiers have always wagered more money with DraftKings, but the difference in the numbers is starting to become a substantial one.

Gamblers bet over $130 million with DraftKings throughout September, which is a massive number compared to FanDuel’s $77 million handle.

All things considered, there was a big increase from month to month.

Back in August, DraftKings had a $21 million lead in the handle numbers. That difference ballooned up to over $53 million in September.

And yet, despite that huge difference, FanDuel is still making more money than its counterpart. The sportsbook took in over $10.6 million worth of gross receipts last month compared to the $7.1 million haul from DraftKings.

FanDuel might be losing the popularity contest, but it’s ultimately more successful than DraftKings in any given month.

After all, the end goal for any gambling company is to make money, and FanDuel is doing that at a higher rate than any other sportsbook in Indiana’s market.

New Indiana sports betting record

Football season is still in the early stages, and Indiana already has a new record under its belt.

With the way that Indiana’s market has been growing, the state likely has a few more all-time highs to hit before year’s end.

NFL betting runs up the numbers in Indiana for September

Basketball might carry a little extra weight in Indiana, but nothing quite captures the interest of gamblers like football does.

Football is the most popular betting sport in the country. When the NFL and college seasons return, it leads to a massive run-up in sports betting handles and Indiana sports betting revenue.

Indiana is certainly a part of that trend. Take last year as an example.

September was the start of football’s rise in the numbers. Check out the month-month growth of Indiana’s handle throughout last year’s football season.

  • September 2020: $207 million
  • October 2020: $230 million
  • November 2020: $251 million
  • December 2020: $313 million
  • January 2020: $348 million

With $355 million worth of September wagers this year, Indiana is already beating that growth trend by a wide margin in 2021.

SBK Sportsbook, Bally Bet coming to Indiana

New sportsbooks launching in the state will play an important role in the market’s continued growth.

When betting apps arrive in new states, they often come with all sorts of special promotions and deals to entice gamblers. That, in turn, helps drive the betting numbers up while increasing competition in the market.

The more competition that companies have, the more creative they need to get to keep their edge.

It’s all good news for Hoosiers, who will have more sportsbooks to pick from than ever before.

The following companies are already on their way to Indiana:

  • SBK Sportsbook
  • Bally Bet
  • fubo Sportsbook
  • MaximBet
  • PlayUp
  • SI Sportsbook

Many of those betting apps will open for business in Indiana before the end of the year.

SBK Sportsbook and Bally Bet could be particularly close to launching.

Things are running a little behind over at SBK, the company told Play Indiana.

“We expected the launch to be mid-September but then some unforeseen roadblocks appeared and we have been working with regulators to clear those hurdles.”

Assuming that things get back on track, the sportsbook could start taking bets in mid-October.

Bally Bet, on the other hand, is moving full steam ahead.

The sportsbook just snagged its temporary vendor license from the gaming commission on Sept. 28. That’s a major milestone towards opening an online sportsbook in Indiana.

With the license in hand, Bally Bet could launch any week now.

Regardless of the timeline, new sportsbooks like Bally Bet and SBK will help push Indiana’s market further. Hoosiers already have a dozen sportsbooks to pick from, and the list of options should only continue to grow going forward.

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Jake Garza

Jake Garza is a US Gambling Industry Analyst for Catena Media. He specializes in Midwest sports betting and casino content. Prior to covering the legal gambling industry, he spent time as a professional sports writer, reporting on teams such as the Cincinnati Bengals, Indianapolis Colts and Indiana Pacers. Garza is currently working as a Managing Editor for Play Indiana and PlayOhio, with previous stops at other well-known brands such as PlayIllinois and PlayMichigan. He has been covering the gambling industry since 2019, and currently works with a team of other journalists to provide comprehensive coverage of the legal U.S. gambling industry.

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