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Maryland Sportsbooks Claim $51 Million In Gross Revenue For May


Maryland Lottery and Gaming reported $51.1 million in gross sports betting revenue for May on Monday as operators routed the public when it came to parlay wagering.

The 25.7% hold on the multi-leg wagers was the highest for any month since the state agency began breaking out handle and revenue figures by sport category last June. The $36.2 million in revenue from those wagers accounted for 70.9% of all winnings compared to the $140.9 million handle from those bets representing 32.7% of the Old Line State’s $431.5 million in total bets accepted.

The May revenue was the sixth-highest in 30 months of sports betting in Maryland, but the 11.8% overall hold was 17th. Gross winnings were up 19.5% year-over-year, trailing the 34.8% surge in handle as last year’s win rate was 1.5 percentage points higher.

Due to an all-time low of $3.2 million in promotional credits and bonuses, the state was eligible to tax $46.6 million in adjusted gross revenue. Promotional spend was down 70.9% compared to May 2023 and 71.3% versus April’s $11.1 million. The second-highest monthly AGR in state history resulted in close to $7 million in state taxes, and the near-$30 million in receipts through the first five months of the year is $11.3 million ahead of the same period in 2023.

Maryland also became the 14th state to eclipse $8 billion handle in the post-PASPA era.

FanDuel Steamrolls Public; ESPN BET Handle Plummets

The first association with parlay and same game parlay success for sportsbooks in the industry is FanDuel, and it looked to be no different in the Old Line State for May. Though Maryland Lottery and Gaming does not break out handle and revenue by sport-specific category for the state’s 13 sports betting apps, FanDuel posted back-to-back months of $30 million in winnings for the third time in 19 months.

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The digital powerhouse finished with $33,216 above that $30 million benchmark, crafting a 15.4% hold against $195.2 million in handle. It was the sixth consecutive month FanDuel had a double-digit hold since its lone instance below 10% — a 7.8% win rate last November. FanDuel, which has a 14.1% win rate for 2024, also crossed $1 billion in handle and $150 million in winnings for the year.

Its eternal rival DraftKings had a 9.2% hold for May while claiming $12.6 million in revenue from $137.4 million worth of bets. That was enough to push its all-time winnings in Maryland above $250 million, with $73.1 million of that coming in the first five months of 2024.

After clearing $30 million in handle in five of the first six months following its rebrand from Barstool Sportsbook, ESPN BET‘s handle nose-dived 52.8% from April to $16.8 million. The PENN Entertainment-owned mobile sportsbook did not claim any promotional deductions for the fourth straight month, but it did keep $1.4 million of those wagers thanks to an 8.4% hold.

ESPN BET has posted a 4.3% hold thus far in 2024, collecting just $6.1 million in revenue from $142.5 million worth of bets placed.

ESPN BET’s lack of action allowed Caesars to bypass it for fifth in handle with $17.5 million, but a sub-6% win rate meant revenue $49,300 above $1 million. Caesars has not cracked a 6% hold since January, but May’s seven-figure haul was enough to clear $20 million in all-time revenue.

ESPN BET’s May swoon also allowed BetMGM to grab a firm hold on the final podium spots for revenue and handle, coming within $4,000 of $3 million for the former. It had a 9.6% hold on $31.1 million in bets, slightly above its 9.3% mark for 2024.

Fanatics Sportsbook cleared $1 million in revenue for the second consecutive month, crafting a 9.3% win rate to collect $1.2 million of the $12.3 million wagered on its app. It is also the first time Fanatics had back-to-back 9% holds since its first five months from May 2023 to September 2023 were all 11.6% or higher.

When including its launch on May 31 of last year, Fanatics finished its first year of operations with $137.5 million in handle and close to $5 million in gross revenue, good for a 7.2% hold.

Veterans Services, which operates a mobile sportsbook through England-base Bee-Fee Limited, had a relatively low-key launch with just $80 in wagers while paying out $17 above that amount.

Parlay Wins Cover Baseball Struggles

Maryland sportsbooks topped $30 million in parlay revenue for the sixth straight month, and it obscured some lesser operator efforts elsewhere. The Orioles going 17-9 in May contributed to a paltry 2% hold on $86.8 million worth of bets that resulted in $1.7 million in revenue.

The hold on pro basketball was 4.4% — the seventh straight month it was below 6% — as operators claimed $4.8 million in winnings against $109.6 million in handle. Operators improved in soccer after losing $150,400 in April, but they finished with a 4.8% win rate to reap $757,000 from $15.8 million in bets placed.

The catch-all “other” category provided a solid source of revenue at $3.6 million on the strength of an 11.5% hold. Tennis revenue edged over $2.2 million with an 8.1% hold against $27.5 million handle, while hockey winnings totaled $730,500 on a 5.7% win rate from $12.9 million in handle.

Year-Over-Year AGR Surges With Light May Promo Spend

The $2.44 billion in year-to-date handle is up 34.5% compared to the first five months of 2023, but May’s light promo spend means the $60.8 million in spend this year is $9 million less. As a result, the $196.2 million in AGR this year is 60% higher than the same period in 2023.

Gross revenue is up “only” 19.5% year-over-year at $270 million, lagging behind revenue since the 11.1% hold is nearly 1.4 percentage points lower than the 12.4% attained in the opening five months of last year.

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