ccording to data released Wednesday by the Virginia Lottery, bets placed during July in the state amounted for $161.9 million, but bettors won $141.94 million.
In June, the state reported $234.9 million in gross revenue from wagers, making July’s revenue a decrease of 31%.
Virginia sports betting wagers now total more than $1.48 billion since the state legalized sports betting in mid-January.
According to the Virginia Lottery, this drop in wagering is not an isolated case, as it is consistent with what occurred in other areas in the U.S.. PlayUSA.com network’s PlayVirginia, which tracks the state’s gaming market, released an analysis that concurs.
Eric Ramsey, analyst for PlayUSA.com, said: “July brings a relatively light sports schedule and summer vacation that typically make it the slowest month in sports betting. Virginia is not immune from a trend that has affected every major market”.
“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 fledging sports industry”, he foresaw.
Lead analyst for PlayVirginia.com added: “The NBA Finals and the Olympics, which features star time difference, didn’t particularly move the needle. 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”.
The state placed a 15% tax on sports betting activity based on each permit holder’s adjusted gross revenue. With four operators reporting net positive adjusted gross revenue, the monthly taxes for July total $1.86 million.
The seven licensed operators included in July’s reporting were Betfair Interactive US (FanDuel) in partnership with the Washington Football Team; Crown Virginia Gaming (DraftKings); BetMGM; Rivers Portsmouth Gaming (Rivers Casino Portsmouth); Caesars Virginia (William Hill), WSI US (Wynn) and Unibet Interactive Inc.
In the fiscal year that ended June 30, the lottery reported a record $3.26 billion in annual sales.