Virginia Lottery’s Gross Revenue Falls Under $40 Million, First Time Since August

The Virginia Lottery reported its February monthly handle on Friday, and sportsbook operators registered a handle of $433.8 million. Despite a 9.2 percent hold rate, there were numerous drops in multiple categories for the month.

The Revenue Numbers Decline For the Month

Bookmakers accepted a total that noted a 15.5 percent decline from January’s total. In addition, it ended the four-month streak of posting $500 million or more.

Although the numbers weren’t exactly what the state would have hoped for in terms of volume; however, the amount was solid enough to make the Old Dominion the ninth state to surpass the $9 billion total handle in the post-PASPA era.

Regardless of the result, it noted a 7.9 percent increase from its year-over-year comparison. The revenue department also suffered because February is a short month, and the Super Bowl is the most significant event on the calendar.

Operators did have a solid win rate, with a hold of 9.2 percent, surpassing the nine percent benchmark for the 11th time in the last 12 months. Unlike some other jurisdictions in the industry, Virginia didn’t disclose their numbers for the Big Game.

Virginia’s Monthly Handle Still Ranks High

There are still some other states that have not publicly released their February monthly reports. Nonetheless, the Old Dominion finished fifth for the month, far ahead of Michigan ($357.2 million) and far behind Pennsylvania ($599.5 million).

It’s the first time the gross revenue for the month has fallen below $40 million since August. With all the factors settling in, $28.4 million was eligible for tax. The state collected f $4.7 million in tax receipts for the month.

The more than $11 million in tax revenue collected in the year’s first two months is more than double the comparable period in 2022. The average betting volume declined considerably in February before the numbers skyrocketed again in March due to March Madness.

An Increase in Promotional Spending for Some Sportsbooks in the State

Virginia has a new set of rules for the market. The state doesn’t allow mobile operators to deduct promotional spending from gross revenue if the platform has been operating for over 12 months.

However, there are some exceptions to the rule for now. Some of the newer mobile sportsbooks eligible to do so, which include bet365, Hard Rock, Betway, and SI Sportsbook, took advantage of the situation. These competitors appear to have aggressively used marketing tactics and other strategies to attract bettors during February, likely with the Super Bowl and introductory offers such as deposit bonuses.

The total promotional deductions across the state were $7.8 million, the highest amount since June 2022. It was also the last month before the budget revision, implementing limits on bonuses and promotions. Considering the change in federal excise tax, AGR loss forwarding, and other deductions, the total amount was set at $3.6 million.