Nine VA Sportsbooks Live As Golden Nugget Launches Today

Posted on October 13, 2021
Written By on October 13, 2021

There are now nine online VA sportsbooks live after Golden Nugget Online launched Wednesday morning.

Golden Nugget was one of three operators approved in March, along with Barstool Sportsbook and Bally Bet.

Penn National‘s Barstool launched Aug. 10 but Bally Bet is still waiting. That launch is not expected until the late fourth quarter or next year as Bally’s focuses on integrating its recently acquired Gamesys tech.

Golden Nugget’s launch is two months late according to the mid-August timeline presented at a Virginia Lottery meeting in July. DraftKings announced it was buying Golden Nugget Online for $1.5 billion around then, which could have had something to do with the delay.

That deal is expected to close in the first quarter of next year, so a platform transition to DraftKings in-house tech could come soon after launch. The sportsbook launched on the recently sold Scientific Games OpenBet platform.

VA sportsbooks saw handle growth in August

The eight online Virginia sportsbooks live in August took $182.4 million in bets in August, up 12.7% from July. That was the low-water mark for monthly Virginia handle so far at $161.9 million.

Like every other US sports betting jurisdiction to report August figures, Virginia saw sports betting revenue tumble from July. Revenue was $18 million, down 10% from July, but that was before deductions.

Operators deducted $6.9 million in bonuses and promotions, and $2.4 million in other deductions for $8.7 million in taxable sports betting revenue. That led to $1.4 million in tax revenue.

Update on VA market share later this month

Virginia’s monthly sports betting report is pretty bare-bones and does not include a breakdown of activity by operator.

The last update came in July and showed FanDuel Sportsbook as the handle, revenue and promotional spending leader through June. DraftKings Sportsbook was a distant second in all three categories.

The next update should come at the Oct. 27 Virginia Lottery board meeting. That meeting could also include an update on the up to five still available licenses, as well as timelines on when other approved operators could launch.

Eighteen operators applied for the five licenses, but at least one is out. That is BlueBet, which was disqualified for no US experience or minority ownership, the company said.

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Matthew Waters

Matthew Waters is a reporter covering legal sports betting and the gambling industry. Previous stops include Fantini Research and various freelance jobs covering professional and amateur sports in Delaware and the Philadelphia area.

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