Tennessee surpassed its previous state record for monthly wagering by over $120 million in October, posting a total of $375 million in bets, according to the Tennessee Education Lottery. Moreover, the state has now become the fifth-fastest to reach the $2 billion lifetime handle mark.
The state's previous record was set in September. Five full weekends of NFL action and college football, plus baseball’s postseason and the start of the NBA season, all contributed to October smashing the former all-time high.
An average of $12.1 million was placed in wagers per day during the month according to PlayTenn, which tracks the Tennessee gaming market. This was considerably up from the $8.6 million per day placed during the previous month. In terms of handle, the $375.3 million in October was up 45.9% from September’s $257.3 million.
While gross revenue for the month decreased by 9% to $23.3 million, the figure still represented the second-most profitable month for sportsbooks in the state. Moreover, October posted a record $17.2 million in taxable revenue, yielding $3.4 million in tax revenue.
As the state’s lifetime handle now reached $2.3 billion, Tennessee has now become the fifth-fastest to surpass the $2 billion mark. However, the current monthly record could soon be left behind, given Tennessee is one of the few states in the US with at least one NFL, NBA and NHL team, plus multiple Division I football and basketball programs, which will all be playing full schedules in November, says PlayTenn.
Tennessee is the lone online-only sports betting market in the country, as it doesn’t have casinos. It currently has eight approved sportsbooks operating: DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, Caesars Sportsbook, WynnBet, Barstool Sportsbook, TwinSpires, and local platform Action 24/7. Barstool was the most recent app to launch, opening just before the start of the current NFL season.
Wagr, a social sports betting app backed by Reddit Co-Founder Alexis Ohanian, has been approved by the Tennessee Education Lottery in August. However, the company hasn’t announced a launch date yet.
Sports betting first launched in Tennessee in the fall of 2020, with four sportsbooks. It is the only Southern state with legal online sports wagering, as Mississippi and Arkansas have sportsbooks, but only for in-person betting.
Operators in the state have to pay $750,000 upfront for licensing, and a $750,000 annual renewal fee. They are taxed at a 20% rate, a relatively high one compared to other states. More operators are expected to launch in Tennessee in the future.