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Indiana sportsbooks reach $250 million in November

10 Dec 2020

(PRESS RELEASE) -- Indiana sportsbooks continued their torrid pace in November — surpassing $250 million in wagers in a month for the first time — as local bettors continued to put money on the state's NFL and college football teams, according to analysts from PlayIndiana.

"Indiana has largely managed to shrug off increased competition from its neighbors, which is a good sign for the future of the state's industry," said Dustin Gouker, lead analyst for "A lot has gone right in recent months to get Indiana to this new high point, but considering the challenges, it has been an impressive string of months."

The state's online and retail sportsbooks accepted $251.4 million in bets in November, according to official reporting released Thursday. That marks the third consecutive month Indiana sportsbooks have set a state record for monthly handle, topping $230.9 million hit in October.

Wagering in November produced a record $25.3 million in adjusted gross revenue for the state's operators, up 20% from the record $21.1 million set in October, and yielded $2.4 million in state taxes. Year over year, Indiana's handle grew 70.7% from $147.3 million in November 2019 while gross revenue jumped 172.4% from $9.3 million.

"I think some of the worries that Indiana would slip as its neighbors legalized sports betting are calming," said Jessica Welman, analyst for "The market in the Hoosier State is proving to be quite dynamic."

One way the Hoosier State, the fifth-largest sports betting market in the U.S., has been able to improve is a boost in local football interest. Notre Dame and Indiana University are both among college football's elite, and the Colts continue their drive toward the NFL playoffs. The result is a swell of football bets, hitting $113.5 million in November, a rise of 33.9% from $84.7 million in October and up 96.5% from $57.7 million in November 2019.

"There really isn't any substitute in sports betting for a local team doing well, and Indiana is enjoying three at once," Gouker said. "And with both college and NBA basketball returning, a sport that enjoys particular interest in Indiana compared with most other legal jurisdictions, December really sets up to be another jump forward."

Online betting generated 85%, or $213.7 million, of November's handle, increasing the share of all bets from 83.6% in October. DraftKings/Ameristar East Chicago continued its dominance of the digital market, increasing its bets to $95.2 million in November from $90.5 million in October even as gross receipts dipped to $7 million. FanDuel/Blue Chip Casino, Hotel & Spa was second with $64.2 million in wagers and $7.7 million in gross receipts.

Retail sportsbooks took in $37.7 million in November wagers, down slightly from $37.9 million in October. Once dominated by sportsbooks nearest Chicago, retail sportsbooks were led in November by Hollywood Lawrenceburg ($11.6 million in handle), nearest Cincinnati.

"Chicago is still an important market for sportsbooks near the border, but the combination of Illinois' sports-betting expansion and the pandemic has challenged the retail market," Welman said. "As a whole, though, growth in online betting has more than made up for any slowdown in the retail market. And Indiana made last-minute protocol changes to keep casinos open while properties in surrounding states shut down, which has helped the industry."
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