Sports Betting in Virginia Exceeds $2 Billion in Wagers Cast Since January Launch


Virginia’s new sports betting continues to set records, with $427 million in wagers cast in October thanks to five weekends of football, postseason baseball, and the opening of the NBA season. Sports betting was launched in the Commonwealth on January 21, and October’s results helped make Virginia the fastest state to exceed $2 billion, according to a PlayVirginia press release.

“It took Old Dominion a little less than nine months to reach the milestone. The previous record-holder, New Jersey, took about 10 months to reach $2 billion in wagers,” PlayVirginia said.

“Virginia bettors won a total of $397,159,921, for a combined 7.06 percent operators win percentage (‘hold’). Virginia’s sports betting catalog of approved leagues and events continues to expand, and through the end of October, bettors have wagered a combined total of nearly $2.4 billion on a wide variety of approved sporting events,” the Virginia Lottery reported Wednesday.

According to the lottery, Virginia levies a 15 percent tax on sports betting operators’ adjusted gross revenue — total wagers minus winnings and other deductions. That’s led to over $14 million in taxes since January 21. 97.5 percent of that goes to Virginia’s General Fund, while 2.5 percent is set aside for a problem gambling fund.

The October results include nine operators: Betfair Interactive US LLC (FanDuel) in partnership with the Washington Football Team, Crown Virginia Gaming LLC (Draft Kings), BetMGM LLC, Rivers Portsmouth Gaming LLC (Rivers Casino Portsmouth), Caesars Virginia LLC, WSI US, LLC (Wynn), Unibet Interactive, Inc., Penn Sports Interactive LLC and Golden Nugget Online Gaming VA, LLC.

The strong October sports betting performance shows that Virginians are becoming more comfortable with online sports betting, PlayVirginia said.

“It’s hard to imagine a better start for Virginia’s sports betting industry,” Network analyst Eric Ramsey said in the PlayVirginia release. “The brisk action over the last two months is raising the bar for the entire market, too. Not only are more Virginians betting, but they are expanding their interest in less conventional wagers such as in-game betting.”

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Eric Burk is a reporter at The Virginia Star and The Star News Network.  Email tips to [email protected].

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