US Sports Gambling Sees Major Gains from Pre-pandemic Levels

According to a report by Canaccord Genuity, the sports gambling handle in the US is now twice that of pre-COVID-19 levels. Of course, much of that has to do with an increase in the number of legalized gambling states, but it is also because of increased interest in the activity. iGaming is on the rise, as well, and the gambling ecosystem will continue to provide much-needed revenue to states across the US that have made the choice to embrace sports gambling and online gaming.

US Sports Gambling Sees Big Gains

According to Canaccord, the US sports gambling handle is now twice what it was prior to COVID-19. This comes as 21 states and Washington, DC are now fully accepting the place sportsbooks have in their economies, and will increase as other states join. Michigan and Virginia are two of the more recent additions, with Louisiana, Ohio and others making final preparations to launch their markets. By the end of the year, there will be more than 30 states (and DC) that offer legalized sports gambling.

Once the other states launch, Canaccord explains, an additional 13% of the US population will have exposure to sports gambling. That number could jump much higher if New York and Florida can introduce mobile sportsbooks, although Florida’s options are currently tenuous at best. New York, the fourth-largest state in the US, is expected to add significant gains and Florida, forecast to hold a multibillion-dollar gold mine of sports gambling activity, could add even more, provided it can get the Department of the Interior on its side. That’s something several lawmakers are currently trying to prevent.

iGaming Brings New Revenue

Sports gambling isn’t alone in bringing new revenue to various states. The iGaming industry has continued to expand in the US, as well, with five states now involved. That quintet covers 11% of the entire population of the country, which means there is still a lot more room for growth. According to Canaccord analysts Michael Graham and Maria Ripps, “Total US iGaming revenue has steadily increased over the past year, and saw a notable uptick following the recent launch in Michigan, setting a new record of $309 million in March.”

The analysts are extremely bullish on a select number of operators, specifically DraftKings, FanDuel, and BetMGM. Although they may have first been launched as sports gambling platforms, the attractiveness of online casinos pulled them in and they are now much more. Having significant control of various markets across the US, and with new features and products being introduced on a continuous basis, the three are poised to experience explosive growth. They add that DraftKings is in a particularly lucrative position, especially if Arizona, Maryland, Louisiana, and Wyoming are able to get their sports gambling marketing up and running before the NFL season starts this summer. The analysts give the operator a price target of $80, which would represent a 60% improvement over its current price of $48.81.