Virginia’s gross gaming revenue in July remained “relatively high”, dropping 9.3 per cent to $20m (2020: $22m), according to PlayVirginia.
Along with GGR, the hold percentage was 12.3 per cent in July, which helped partially offset the low value. Moreover, adjusted gross revenue dropped to $12.7m, yielding $1.9m in state taxes, including $46,611 for problem gambling support.
In addition to its GGR, Virginia’s sports betting volume slumped in July to the lowest level since sportsbooks first launched, echoing a trend that has “affected every major market in the US”. Yet according to PlayVirginia, the seasonal decline in wagering will be “short-lived as causal bettors return home from summer vacations and turn their attention to football.”
“July brings a relatively light sports schedule and summer vacations that typically make it the slowest month in sports betting, and Virginia is not immune from a trend that has affected every major market,” noted Eric Ramsey, analyst for the PlayUSA.com network, which includes PlayVirginia.com.
“The momentum should change quickly as football draws nearer and casual bettors return home. The next five months should bring significant growth to Virginia’s fledgling sports betting industry.”
Bettors placed $161.9m in wagers at Virginia’s sportsbooks in July, down 31.1 per cent from $234.9m in June, according to data released by The Virginia Lottery. The pace of betting was the slowest ever, too, dropping from $7.8m in wagers per day over the 30 days of June to $5.2m over the 31 days of July.
Citing the 2020 pandemic data as “skewed”, PlayVirginia reflected on results across the US in the same period of 2018 and 2019 which mirrored similar results, noting a dip was “hardly a surprise”.
“The NBA Finals and the Olympics, which featured a stark time difference, didn’t particularly move the needle,” said Dann Stupp, lead analyst for PlayVirginia.com. “The Olympics should do modestly better in August, when high-profile team sports like basketball reached the medal rounds.
“But in the end, there just isn’t enough to attract widespread betting, which makes a relatively large win key in helping sportsbooks weather the seasonal slowdown.”
Despite a slow July, Virginia continues to perform well as a sports betting market. Since January, Virginia sportsbooks have accepted $1.5bn in wagers, which has resulted in $127m in GGR.
“Virginia’s sportsbooks remain in an excellent place, and new operators are a good sign that the market is healthy and attractive,” Stupp added. “Increasing competition should help engage new customers and force the largest operators in the state, including FanDuel and DraftKings, to continue to vie for attention. The most important months of the year are still ahead, and competition will help spur the entire market.”