Monthly report

Indiana: Hard Rock casino outperforms Horseshoe for 2nd time; state sets record sports handle

Reading time 2:19 min

Hard Rock Casino in Northern Indiana has become the state’s top-earning casino for the second consecutive month in November, according to data released last Friday by the Indiana Gaming Commission (IGC). The venue narrowly edged the perennial casino win leader, Horseshoe Casino in Hammond.

Hard Rock posted $30.9 million in revenue after paying successful bettors for the month. Meanwhile, Horseshoe placed second, with a monthly win of $30.7 million. Hard Rock Casino Northern Indiana opened earlier this year, on May 14, replacing Gary’s former Majestic Star Casino.

Matt Schuffert, president of Hard Rock Casino Northern Indiana, said he is “very happy” with the November results and remarked the venue added close to 100 slot new machines to its floor that month, reports The Northwest Indiana Times.

We look forward to adding over 100 more throughout December and January, which will include many new machines and some classic, high-demand machines," Schuffert added. "Baccarat continues to lead our strong table games performance, and we will be making some slight additions to our table games offerings very soon."

The data released by the IGC show that Hard Rock attracted $45 million in table game wagers, winning against the $31.8 million posted by Horseshoe. However, Horseshoe is still placing first on slot machine play, at $217.9 million against $217.2 million, partly due to Horseshoe having about 26% more machines than Hard Rock does on its gaming floor.

In addition, the IGC report also highlights Indiana’s momentum in sports betting. Sportsbooks in the state shattered their previous monthly handle record, thus setting a third consecutive all-time high, with more than $463 million in wagers. This also led to a surge in revenue of nearly $50 million.

Part of this success is attributed to basketball’s popularity in the state. And as college basketball will join football and the NBA in the winter sports mix, PlayIndiana, which tracks the state’s gaming industry, predicts sportsbooks are set to continue this positive trend.

"Basketball betting, both college and professional, is more important in Indiana than almost every other legal sports betting market in the U.S.," said Jake Garza, an analyst for the cited platform. "Indiana's best months are typically when college basketball and the NBA are in full stride, and the NFL is still in play."

The $463.7 million in wagers reported in November was up 84.4% from $251.4 million posted the same month last year. The record-setting handle also topped the previous high posted in October, which was of $461.1 million, buoyed by five full weekends of college football and NFL.

Average daily betting reached $15.5 million during the 30 days of November, up from $14.9 million in October. Gross revenue also posted an all-time high at $47.1 million, considerably up from the former $33.3 million set in September. Revenue was also up 86.7% from $25.3 million in November last year.

Sportsbooks in the state have now generated $419.2 million in revenue on $3.4 billion wagers so far this year, thus crossing the $3 billion mark for the first time. Moreover, sportsbooks are on pace to more than double the $1.8 billion in wagers they posted in all of 2020.

Most betting was carried online, accounting for $422.9 million (91.2%); while retail betting accounted for the remaining $40.8 million in handle. DraftKings topped online operators with $166.2 million in bets, followed by FanDuel ($109.8 million). Hollywood Casino Lawrenceburg led retail, with $12.7 million in wagers.

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