The Colorado Division of Gaming reported $25 million in gross sports wagering revenue for July on Tuesday, as operators bounced back from absorbing an eight-figure loss in basketball payouts the previous month.

The Denver Nuggets winning their first NBA title in franchise history took a major chunk off operators’ bottom lines in June, as the public came out $10.8 million ahead on $57.9 million handle betting on basketball. July was a return to normal for hoops action, as the house kept $1.4 million from $34.5 million worth of wagers.

Overall, state sportsbooks processed $281.1 million in bets, as Colorado became only the sixth state in the post-PASPA era to surpass $13 billion in handle. It reached the benchmark in 39 months of wagering.

Monthly handle was up 8.8% compared to July 2022, while gross revenue increased by 20%. The rises in revenue are sharper in contrast with June — gross revenue was up 170.6%, as the 8.9% hold was nearly six full percentage points higher and the $19.1 million in adjusted gross revenue was an increase of more than eight-fold.

State tax revenue more than quadrupled from June to nearly $1.8 million, lifting the 2023 total to $14 million. That is $6.6 million ahead of last year’s pace through the first seven month of 2022, as the state has taxed more than two-thirds of the $204.8 million in gross revenue compared to only 40% of the $159.8 million a year ago.

While year-to-date handle is only 0.6% higher than 2022 at $2.86 billion, gross revenue has surged 28.2% thanks to a 7.2% hold that is more than 1.5 percentage points in the house’s favor versus last year. Adjusted revenue continues to run at a clip more than double last year’s, the result of a higher operator hold combined with the passage of House Bill 22-1402, which reduced write-offs for operators and took effect Jan. 1.

Baseball, tennis, and soccer revenue tick higher

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Not paying out winning NBA tickets in July resulted in a huge upswing for operators. The house had a 7.3% hold on single-event wagering from $236.3 million handle, resulting in $17.3 million in gross revenue. That marked a dramatic improvement from June, when operators paid out nearly $160,000 above the $241 million on such bets while posting a minus-0.1% win rate.

The house had an improvement of nearly 2.3 percentage points on baseball wagers, as the 6.6% hold provided $6.9 million in winnings — more than $2 million better than June. Tennis wagering was popular, as the $33.9 million was the second-most of any sport and operators crafted a 9.1% win rate to collect nearly $3.1 million. That is the second-highest monthly total for the sport in state history, trailing the $3.1 million-plus accrued last September.

The U.S. faltering in the round of 16 at soccer’s Women’s World Cup also may have a been a boost to operators, as they claimed $2.6 million in revenue with a 14.7% win rate for the sport. Colorado sportsbooks have a 11.1% hold in 2023 for soccer, winning almost $11.7 million from $104.8 million bet.

The $7.7 million in revenue derived from parlays was the most of any category, but it was also 17.9% lower compared to June, as handle dipped 35.6% to $44.8 million. Operators had a 17.2% win rate on parlays, up 3.7 percentage points, but July was also the 10th consecutive month the house failed to post a 20% hold on that type of wager.

The Colorado Division of Gaming does not break out handle and revenue by operator in its reports.


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