The US sports betting market knew the odds Intralot offers here aren’t as good as other operators and, as it turns out, so do DC sports bettors.
The DC Lottery reported an abysmal $1.2 million in handle for its first two months of GambetDC operations through Aug. 3. Yes, that’s correct: $1.2 million in handle, not revenue, according to WTOP-FM.
That led to more than $237,000 in DC sports betting revenue.
It seems excruciatingly clear that something needs to change if the DC Lottery’s sports betting offering will be successful.
LSR reached out to the DC Lottery for comment and to confirm the low totals and number of users, but didn’t receive a response.
DC Lottery soft-launched Intralot sports betting platform
The GambetDC desktop platform launched at the end of May while the iOS app didn’t launch until the end of June. With just a few sports available to bet, the Lottery decided to soft-launch the platform without much marketing.
A full-scale advertising and marketing campaign was on hold until there was a more “robust schedule of major sporting events,” Nicole Jordan, the director of marketing and communications at the Office of Lottery and Gaming, said at the time.
But in that time, GambetDC sent out at least eight marketing emails with free bets on the multiple sports, including the MLB, MLS, NBA, NHL and PGA Tour.
Still plenty of betting options
Even without major sports, there was plenty to bet on as we saw in other states.
GambetDC doesn’t show odds for the favorite pandemic sport, table tennis. But it does offer odds on Korean baseball, darts, UFC, NASCAR, international soccer and more.
And since the results ran through Aug. 3, that means that $1.2 million in handle included a week and a half of MLB games, five days of NBA action and three days of NHL action.
Given the pent-up demand for sports betting, GambetDC should have easily cleared $1.2 million in handle for that period alone.
DC monopoly already over for Intralot
While GambetDC is still the only online sportsbook available in the nation’s capital, it is no longer the only sportsbook in town.
William Hill launched sports betting at Capital One Arena at the end of July with a temporary sportsbook in its box office. A permanent sportsbook will be used when fans can return to watch games in the arena.
Other sportsbooks at arenas, stadiums and restaurants will eventually follow in DC to add more competition. And soon enough, more nearby states will offer sports betting as well. Online operators should be up and running with Virginia sportsbooks in time for NFL betting in January.