After a less-than-stellar February, it didn’t take long for sportsbooks in Indiana to bounce back with some solid sports betting numbers in March, recording a 15.6% increase of the $273.9 million from February and jumping up to $316.7 million.
Looking at the year-on-year figures, the numbers are even more impressive with an increase of more than $240 million, over 300% up from March 2020 when the effects of global pandemic began to bite and sports closed worldwide, including the cancellation of the 2020 March Madness college basketball tournament.
Adjusted gross revenue for the month of March came in at $26.3 million, an increase from February of $9.3 million and up an incredible $20.8 million from the previous March. However, both numbers were considerably short of January’s record numbers.
Hosting March Madness sees Basketball betting boom
After hosting the entire March Madness basketball tournament, the state of Indiana recorded its best ever result for basketball betting. The mark was significantly higher than January’s $133 million worth of basketball wagers, as March Madness drove the state’s basketball betting new record to $160 million. Had one of Indiana’s many state college teams done better in the tournament, arguably the number could have been even higher. Purdue was the only Indiana school to make the March Madness cut, however, the Boilermakers lost their first match against North Texas.
“It’s hard to know just how much it moved the needle, but March’s results were clearly fueled by a huge volume of NCAA Tournament games all in one place and by a number of fans who traveled to Indiana and then bet legally as they attended games. We may never see a betting event quite like that ever again,” said Jessica Welman, a leading sports betting analyst in the Hoosier State.
DraftKings leads the way for online sportsbooks in Indiana
Generating 34% of the Indiana online sportsbook revenues for the month was DraftKings, while FanDuel had a competitive March, close behind in second place with 33% of the sports betting handle and 26% of the total revenue. Rounding out the Top 3 was BetMGM with a very solid 15% of total sports wagering revenue.
Others in the top 10 included;
- PointsBet Sportsbook – 5% total revenue
- Bet Rivers (from the SugarHouse Sports’ Rush Street Interactive sportsbook family) – around 3% of the Indiana total sports betting revenue
- William Hill – also around 3%.
It is worthwhile to bear in mind that many residents of the state of Illinois may have crossed the border into Indiana to place their March Madness online wagers, after Illinois State Governor JB Pritzker controversially decided not renew that state’s remote registration laws.
Just like New Yorkers flooding into New Jersey and Pennsylvania to place online wagers, anecdotal evidence shows that many residents of Illinois travelled into Indiana to open their online sportsbooks accounts in March, rather than risk running the gauntlet with COVID-19 and entering an Illinois casino to sign up (as now again required to law).
Casinos also fire up in Indiana
March data also saw the highest casino take of the year to date with $209 million in revenue. It’s thought that the Federal Government’s stimulus payments and the warmer weather dragging people out of their winter hibernation assisted in boosting Indiana’s casino win in March well above the $135.5 million reported for February 2021.
Naturally, the casino numbers year-on-year are way up, as March 2020 was deeply affected by the casino closures enforced at the beginning of the global pandemic. Year-on-year numbers were up 112% at Indiana’s 5 casinos, but its still online sports betting leading the way by some margin in the Hoosier State.