Iowa Sports Betting Sets Record in October with $80M Handle

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Iowa has posted a record-setting month for the sports betting industry in the state in October with more than $80 million in handle.

According to the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission (IRGC) report that was released on Monday, the Hawkeye State accepted $81.9 million in wagers in October. Besides, October also boasted as the record second consecutive month, representing a 13% increase from September’s $72.4 million.

The IRGC also revealed that sports betting revenue increased 60.8% year-on-year in October, thanks to the muscular growth in online handle for the month. Considering the current situation around the US, the current growth is both surprising and welcoming for the industry.

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The same report said that Iowa paid out $72.8 million in winning bets, leaving $9.1 million in revenue, with around a third of the amount coming in from retail books while the remaining two-thirds came online.

This is particularly impressive for the Hawkeye State, considering the sports calendar has moved from all four major sports playing to only football and playoff baseball. The NBA Finals at the beginning of October helped somewhat as the calendar shifted.

Sports betting increased over 76% year-on-year from the last year’s October handle of $46.5 million. Both retail and online sports betting increased this October as the Iowa sports betting industry grew. William Hill also landed on the state’s market last month, leading to more growth.

While retail handle grew 21.6% from the previous year at $25 million, money wagered online more than doubled year-on-year to approximately $57 million, representing a 13.7% increase from September 2020’s total.

After payouts of $72.8 million, the remaining revenue of $9.1 million broke down to $2.7 million from retail betting (down 9.8%), and $6.4 million from mobile betting (up 140%).

What Keeps Iowas Sports Betting Going?

It is a welcoming sign for the Iowa sports betting industry to grow with back-to-back record-breaking months. As it is exciting for the sports betting fans, it is equally crucial for the state, which collected $613,000 in taxes. September numbers often reflect a lower handle and taxes because of a high influx of sign-ups ahead of the football season. Obviously, new customers mean more bonus money and free play.

William Hill entered the Iowa sports betting market last month and helped swell October’s handle. The London-based betting operator, which is recently acquired by the American company Caesars, saw roughly $35 million in wagers through them in October.

Online betting is also taking over in the state as $56.9 million was wagered online compared to the $25 million worth of retail handle.

However, what particularly kept Iowa going on in October was Big Ten football returning to the state. The Hawkeye State could also benefit largely from two games at the end of the month. Besides, the visiting customers from Nebraska might have helped Iowa continue its record-setting months, thanks to the sportsbooks situated near the Iowa-Nebraska border.

Will Iowa Witness More Growth?

Though the state’s betting handle continues to increase, the growth is at a snail’s pace. It is critical to see how William Hill fares during its first full month in the Iowa sports betting market. Depending upon its performance, in addition to other contributing factors, the Hawkeye State could see another record-setting jump in betting handle in November.

Furthermore, a full month of Big Ten football will also define November, especially considering Iowa is expecting visiting customers from two bordering states, Nebraska and Minnesota. Besides, the role of online betting will continue to define and dominate in Iowa sports betting market as the leading factor.

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