Virginians spend big on first full month of sports betting, state rakes in small profit


This Sept. 5, 2019 photo shows a gambler making a sports bet at Bally’s casino in Atlantic City N.J. Participants in a national sports betting conference on Dec. 1, 2020, agreed that huge holes in state budgets due to the coronavirus outbreak, and the demonstrated eagerness of fans to bet on sports are likely to spur a further expansion of sports betting and online casino gambling in the U.S. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — We bet you didn’t put any money down on these stats! The Virginia Lottery has broken down how much Virginians spent on sports betting in February and how the state and operators made. Betters won big this month while most operators took a loss leading to the state bringing in a small amount of tax dollars.

On Super Bowl Sunday alone, people across the Commonwealth wagered $19,559,701. That one day of wagers alone made up over 7.3% of the total money bet on sports in Virginia last month.

Overall during the shortest month of the year, people gambled $265,778,306 on sports and brought in $253,539,526 in winnings. Sports betting operators had a combined win percentage or hold of 4.6%. Operators also spent significant amounts of money on bringing in new customers with $13,187,560 going towards bonuses and promotions.

Currently, the Virginia Lottery is basing its numbers off of five companies licensed to facilitate sports betting in the state. The companies are Betfair Interactive US LLC (FanDuel) in partnership with the Washington Football Team, Crown Virginia Gaming LLC (Draft Kings), BetMGM LLC,Portsmouth Gaming Holdings LLC (Rivers Casino Portsmouth) and Caesars Virginia LLC (William Hill).

For the month of February most companies had a negative adjusted gross revenue due to promotional expenses — with the five reporting companies losing a total of $3,213,72. However, one company did have positive revenue this month resulting in some tax dollars heading to Virginia.

Sports betting companies pay a 15% tax on their Adjusted Gross Revenue (total wagers minus winnings). In February, $300,593.91 was paid in taxes, of that 7,514.85 was deducted to go towards gambling treatment and support.

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