Examining Ohio Sports Betting After 6 Months Since Launch

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Written By Giovanni Shorter | Last Updated
Ohio Sports Betting

Mobile and retail sports betting launched in Ohio in January and the market has been a major success. Since launch, Ohio sportsbooks have seen $3,461,691,411 in wagers, $508,999,741 in revenue, and contributed $51,004,249 in state taxes. Here we will look at the impact Ohio sportsbooks have in their first six months of activity.

Ohio Sportsbooks Strong Start

The monthly Ohio revenue reports have shown how consistent the Ohio market has been since going live. Each month, Ohio has ranked as a top-three sports betting market. The success has motivated lawmakers to raise the sports betting tax rate. Ohio now taxes sportsbooks 20% as opposed to the initial 10% rate.

Mobile markets have dominated sports betting in the Buckeye State, with FanDuel claiming the largest market share at 36.5%. Mobile betting has done so well, in fact, that it has affected the growth of the local kiosk market.

Kiosk Success Underwhelming To Operators

The Canterino’s Sports Bar and Grille in Girard is home to two sports betting kiosks. Bar owner Tony Canterino does not view the early returns as that impressive, blaming mobile betting apps as the reason.

“They’re OK,” said Tony Canterino to WKBN 27 when asked how the kiosk market has been so far. “They’re not where we expected. We thought they were going to do tremendous but they’re kind of slow… That’s what the issue with it is now. Guys will sit at the bar and they’ll bet on their phone instead of using the kiosks.”

It is no secret that more than 95% of all wagers placed in Ohio have been at the best sports betting sites. The May revenue report for Type-C, or retail sportsbooks, shows that just $1,235,984 total was wagered in June. Compare that total to the nearly $430 million in wagers from online operators – it is clear there is a divide.

Not all operators are comparing the difference between mobile and retail and viewing it as a disappointment, however. Austintown’s Hollywood Gaming has viewed the first six months as a strong success.

The operator has seen fluctuations in wagers since launch. During the first month of activity, Hollywood Gaming saw $1.2 million in bets. Recent reports show just $474,000 was wagered in May. This dip also coincides with an overall decline in betting during the summer months.

“The summer historically is one of the slower parts of the year, but right around the corner, college football, NFL football, we’re excited for that to come back,” said Kevin Brogan, Director of Marketing for Hollywood Gaming.

Ohio Sports Betting And Its Affects On Problem Gambling

Another thing of note is how sports gambling has affected those with problem gambling issues. There has been a notable increase in problem gambling cases since sports betting has launched in Ohio.

“With the legalization of sports betting, that means more and more people are gambling, which means more and more people can develop problems,” said Stephanie Geer, gambling addiction counselor with Youngstown’s Meridian HealthCare. “What we have noticed so far in 2023, of the new individuals that have sought services for gambling addiction treatment, about 30% of them are primarily seeking help for a sports betting addiction.”

Ohio invests millions of dollars into combatting problem gambling. This includes its self-exclusion list, gambling addiction hotline, and sports wagering advertising regulations. Ohio has been a market leader in the nationwide push for better gambling practices. This has been reflected in the amount of sports bettors utilizing the tools offered in Ohio.

“We have a statewide campaign, Pause Before You Play,” said Derek Longmeier, who runs the Problem Gambling Network of Ohio. “In the first month of legalized sports betting, there were almost 1,500 calls to the helpline, and that was triple what it was in January of 2022.”

Ohio sports betting has been a major success in several areas and has seen some disappointment in others. But what is clear is that locals in the Buckeye State have embraced betting to a high degree.