A lack of major sports didn’t dampen the pent-up demand for Colorado sports betting in its launch month.
Sports bettors wagered $25.5 million in Colorado in May after the industry officially launched May 1.
That handle was spread across six operators, including some of the biggest names in sports betting:
- DraftKings Sportsbook
- FanDuel Sportsbook
- Fox Bet
At maturity, the Colorado sports betting market could have 35 mobile sportsbook operators through the state’s 33 commercial casinos and two tribal casinos. That market could generate up to or perhaps more than $6 billion in annual handle at maturity, according to PlayColorado.com.
The official release from Colorado’s gaming regulators will be available after June 15, which is when audited totals are due from each operator. It’s unclear what that official release will look like, but it could include a breakdown by operator and by sport.
Hot Colorado sports betting start without major sports
Nearly $26 million in handle is nothing to sneeze at when considering what Coloradans could bet on in May.
For comparison, the Scoreboard platform run by SBTech for the Oregon Lottery that has more than 57,000 registered users since its October launch, recorded $7.3 million in handle last month.
The biggest events were The Match: Champions for Charity, four nights of UFC, a handful of NASCAR races, Bundesliga soccer and Korean baseball. And, of course, the coronavirus pandemic favorite: table tennis.
Colorado’s first real test in the US sports betting market should come in August when the NBA and NHL will likely resume their seasons.
Major brands helped with launch
It certainly didn’t hurt Colorado that the four sports betting brands available at launch were all major operators.
BetMGM, BetRivers, DraftKings Sportsbook and FanDuel Sportsbook are all well-known brands in the industry by now.
And even those completely new to sports betting know the DraftKings and FanDuel brands following their massive daily fantasy sports ad blitzes a few years back.
Colorado will be full of well-known brands, like PointsBet and William Hill, niche brands well-versed sports bettors love like Circa Sports and SuperBook USA, and brands still looking to make a major US splash like Bet365, Betfred and theScore Bet.