Massachusetts bettors performed almost as poorly as Ben Affleck and Matt Damon’s “Dunkings” track suits looked in January, as the state’s Gaming Commission reported $72.7 million in gross sports betting revenue for operators on Thursday.

The record figure breezed past the previous high of $62.1 million in house winnings set in December. DraftKings set a Bay State record with $36.9 million in revenue, the fourth time in 11 months the Massachusetts-based operator surpassed $30 million. Statewide gross revenue increased 17% compared to December, as the 11.1% hold was up more than 1.7 percentage points.

Handle totaled $651.7 million, down 1.1% from December but also within $7 million of the record $658.7 million bet that month. January’s action also pushed Massachusetts over $5 billion handle in 13 months of wagering, though January 2023 betting was strictly retail.

This January’s hold ranks second all-time, trailing the 13.6% win rate attained last May. The state was able to levy taxes on $71.1 million in adjusted gross revenue, resulting in an inflow of $14.2 million into Massachusetts’ coffers. The state has collected $108 million in taxes since launch, with all but $311,395 of that coming since mobile betting started last March.

DraftKings defending home turf well

It was expected that DraftKings would extend every effort to make sure it was the No. 1 mobile sportsbook where its headquarters are located, and those efforts continue to be rewarded. January marked its second-best hold behind the 13.9% fashioned in May, while the $311.4 million worth of accepted wagers was its third straight month with more than $310 million.

DraftKings has accounted for just over half the $5.45 billion online handle in the Bay State, while its $274.5 million in gross revenue is also narrowly over the 50% mark among the eight mobile betting apps.

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DraftKings’ eye-popping totals overshadowed a record month for eternal rival FanDuel. It led online operators with a 13.2% hold in January, reaping $25.6 million in winnings from $194 million worth of accepted bets. That lifted FanDuel’s overall hold on gross revenue in the Bay State above 11%, as it has claimed nearly $175.5 million from $1.59 billion handle.

ESPN BET was again the No. 3 book for handle in January, though its $45.4 million handle was down 9.2% from December. The PENN Entertainment-owned sportsbook did represent 7.1% of the nearly $638 million worth of online wagers, keeping it in line with first-year goals for the marketplace.

Similar to other states, ESPN had a challenging January in terms of revenue, as its 4.5% hold resulted in $2 million in gross revenue. That was less than half December’s total and barely more than one-third the $5.8 million claimed as part of its November rollout.

BetMGM made some inroads into that No. 3 spot for handle, reducing the gap between itself and ESPN BET to $8.6 million despite a 6% downturn in handle to $36.8 million. BetMGM had a strong 10.8% hold to kick off 2024, resulting in $4 million in winnings as it avoided a third straight month with a sub-10% win rate.

Fanatics Sportsbook bucked the trend of second-tier operators when it came to handle, improving 13.6% to $15.5 million — narrowly off its all-time high of $15.8 million set in November. That helped Fanatics notch its second month with $1 million in revenue in Massachusetts, finishing nearly $100,000 above the benchmark while notching a 7.1% hold.

The two operators who will be leaving the Bay State marketplace this month, WynnBET and Betr, had slight declines from December. WynnBET claimed close to $731,000 in winnings while crafting a 6.2% hold against $11.9 million handle, while Betr won nearly $36,000 from $419,000 worth of wagers for a win rate of 8.6%.

It was the seventh time in 11 months of mobile wagering that operators had a collective hold of 10% or higher, while the all-time hold for online wagering against gross revenue is narrowly over 10%.





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