Business By The Books: Caesars Spending Smartly On KY Sports Betting

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Caesars is spending significantly less than it estimates some of its competitors have on the launch of sports betting in Kentucky.

That is according to Steve Wieczynski of Stifel, who met with multiple members of management during G2E in Las Vegas. He maintained his buy rating and moved to an $80 price target based on 2025.

The average cost per customer acquisition in Kentucky for Caesars has been around $100, management told Wieczynski. Some peers are spending more than $1,000 per KY sports betting customer, Caesars estimates.

The lower marketing spend will likely lead to lower initial market share, management said, but it plays into Caesars’ plan of sustainable and profitable growth for its digital segment. Eventually, market share should be in the ~10% range, management added.

Features important to profitable sports betting, too

While maintaining a disciplined promotional budget is key to the bottom line, so is continuing to improve the actual sports betting product, management said.

New features will continue to be rolled out in order to keep the app fresh and competitive, they added.

Online betting remains a focus for Caesars despite more competition entering the field. While ESPN may have a big audience, Caesars has better knowledge of its customers and more “actionable marketing insights” from its database, management told Wieczynski.

iGaming still growing

The recently launched Caesars Palace online casino app is going better than expected, according to management. Average daily revenue over the past 12 months is about double that of the prior period.

Separating online casino from the sportsbook should help bring in more of the female demographic, Wieczynski said.

Caesars thinks it can hit a 10% market share for iGaming by the end of 2025 but wants to be around 25% to 30% over the long term.

Tipico tops E&K online casino ranks

Speaking of iGaming, Eilers & Krejcik‘s latest analysis of US online casino apps led to a surprising new number one in Tipico.

The company scored 16.3 out of 20 points by basically being solid at most without many mistakes:

“The app does a lot of things well, but crucially it doesn’t do much wrong. Online casino is a simpler proposition than OSB and places much greater emphasis on a clean, intuitive, and fast UX.

“Tipico excelled here from in-app navigation to game loading and stability. In casino more than any other gambling vertical, getting the basics right is the most important thing.”

– The EKG Line newsletter

BetMGM took the second spot followed by DraftKings at third, the former number one Barstool at fourth and FanDuel at fifth. Barstool fell because of other apps improving while Barstool “stood still,” according to The EKG Line newsletter.

Novig gets first sports betting license

Novig received an online sports betting license from Colorado regulators and plans to launch in November.

This is the first step for Novig, which is building a “commission-free, high-frequency” sports betting exchange. Exchange betting is still working through approvals in Colorado, though, so Novig will have a traditional sportsbook offering at launch.

Initial markets will be focused on NFL, NBA, MLB and college football and basketball. Novig will add more sports in 2024.

Novig recently raised $6.4 million in August from multiple investors led by Lux Capital.

Elys adds third DC sports betting spot

Elys announced its third Washington, DC retail sportsbook location at Grand Central Sportsbook.

The company also operates sports betting at the Grand Central Restaurant and at the Cloakroom Gentlemen’s Club OverUnder Sportsbook Lounge.