The Virginia Lottery has released data confirming that Virginia’s sportsbooks handled $325m in wagers and generated $31.5m in gross revenue in December.
The month’s handle also ensured that Virginia became one of the first states to handle over $3bn in sports wagers in its first year of operations.
“Sportsbooks have set so many records recently that it almost seems disappointing when they don’t, but December was still one of the best months for Virginia’s operators,” said Dann Stupp, lead analyst for PlayVirginia.com.
“The most important thing for the industry is that the year ended with a ton of momentum. The final four months of the year helped sportsbooks finish the year on the high side of expectations.”
Sportsbooks generated $426.6m in wagers in December, a 6% increase on the $402.6m handled in November, falling just short of October’s record-breaking monthly handle of $427.3m.
Virginia’s sportsbooks generated $31.5m in gross revenue, which was the second-most all-time despite falling short of November’s $48.3m win by 35%, highlighting that players had more luck in December.
After $17.1m in promotional expenses, sportsbooks produced $10.1m in taxable revenue, yielding $1.7m in state taxes.
“As impressive as the first year of sports betting has been, Virginia’s market has not come close to maturity,” said Eric Ramsey, an analyst for the PlayUSA.com Network, which includes PlayVirginia.com.
“Virginians are still getting comfortable with legal sports betting in its many forms, and operators will continue to look for ways to expand their base. 2021 was just the beginning.”
Concluding 2021’s figures, Virginia’s sportsbooks handled $3.2bn in wagers, the eighth-most among the U.S. states that allowed some form of legal sports betting in 2021, $285.9m in gross revenue and $20.3m in state taxes.
“We’ve learned so much over the first year, and the state is developing into a unique market,” Stupp concluded. “Regulators have made some missteps, such as the betting ban on in-state colleges and the decision to tax adjusted gross revenue. But by and large, Virginia got it right and that should foster a healthy market for years to come.”