In The Shadow Of March Madness, Iowa Books See Fewer Bets In April

Written By PlayIA Staff on May 6, 2022
April 2022 Revenue

Shots in the Final Four and putts at The Masters help, but April 2022 marked the beginning of a seasonal slowdown in the Iowa sports betting industry.

The state’s 18 sportsbooks collected $177,370,317 in April bets compared to the $233.5 million last month. That’s down 24% month over month.

But Iowa customers are more comfortable placing bets compared to a year ago. April 2022 numbers are up 50% from the $118.4 million collected in April 2021.

The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission (IRGC) released the sports betting numbers Friday morning.

From Eric Ramsey, analyst for the PlayUSA.com Network, which includes PlayIA.com:

“The industry’s focus begins to change in April. During the football season, sportsbooks use heavy interest to expand to new customers. And they typically do that with aggressive promotional offerings, especially during events like the Super Bowl and NCAA Tournament. With sports such as baseball and golf taking center stage in the summer months, the industry will taper some of its promotion and should continue to wring significant revenue.”

Iowa policies make the state an ideal testing ground for sportsbook operators who want to enter the North American market. Sports betting in 2022 should continue to outpace 2021, according to Russ Mitchell, lead analyst for PlayIA.com.

“April’s slowdown is a given. But while volume should continue to be lower than football season, sportsbooks will look to other opportunities. The NBA Playoffs are one, especially with the neighboring Milwaukee Bucks on quest to repeat. The Stanley Cup Playoffs feature the Wild and Blues. And, this weekend’s Kentucky Derby begins a season of Triple Crown bets in the Hawkeye State.”

Iowa sports betting totals for April 2022

LicenseeOnline Brand(s)HandleRevenueHoldTaxes
Diamond Jo DubuqueFanDuel | Betway$39,056,022$4,051,39310.4%$273,469
Diamond Jo WorthBetMGM$25,948,424$1,692,6466.5%$114,254
Wild Rose JeffersonDraftKings | BetRivers | Circa$21,116,929$1,515,8407.2%$102,319
Prairie MeadowsCaesars$16,913,156$981,6935.8%$66,264
Wild Rose ClintonDraftKings | BetRivers$16,170,447$946,8885.9%$63,915
Wild Rose EmmetsburgDraftKings$11,987,230$950,5927.9%$64,165
Isle WaterlooCaesars$11,179,621$264,5772.4%$17,859
Ameristar Council BluffstheScore Bet | Barstool$9,124,503$602,5036.6%$40,669
Horseshoe Council BluffsCaesars$5,717,512$423,2797.4%$28,571
Isle BettendorfCaesars$5,389,692$255,8044.7%$17,267
Harrah's Council BluffsCaesars | Unibet$3,922,037$212,1275.4%$14,319
Catfish BendPointsBet$3,409,145$324,8919.5%$21,930
Grand FallsBetfred | Bally Bet$1,821,068-$28,939-1.6%$0
RiversideElite$1,616,461$124,7527.7%$8,005
Hard Rock Sioux CityHard Rock$1,405,947$11,1150.8%$750
LakesideCaesars | DRF$984,469$8420.1%$57
Rhythm CityElite$786,704$22,5072.9%$1,519
Q CasinoQ$621,914$36,9075.9%$2,491
Casino Queen MarquetteFubo$199,036$8,8274.4%$350
$177,370,317$12,398,2437.0%$838,174

Even as the weather improves, sports gamblers still prefer making bets close to home.

About 91% of sports bets were placed online or via betting apps. Other findings from PlayIA‘s review of the IRGC report:

  • Sports betting generated $838,174 in tax revenue for the state in April.
  • The $12.4 million in revenue was up 61% from $7.7 million in April a year ago.
  • FanDuel led the state with just over $4 million in net receipts.
  • DraftKings topped the sports-betting market with $44 million in wagers, which yielded $3.35 million in net receipts. Caesars and FanDuel are neck-and-neck for the next spot. Caesars was No. 2 with $39.2 million in online wagering. FanDuel was third, with about $38.4 million in collected bets.
  • BetMGM is the only other Iowa sportsbook to clear the $10 million mark in April. Customers placed $21 million in bets at their sportsbook.
  • Altogether, eight Iowa sportsbooks accepted at least $1 million in bets when Barstool ($5.6 million), BetRivers ($3.8 million), PointsBet ($3.2 million) and Elite Sportsbook ($1.8 million) are factored in.

Iowa became the 11th state to allow sports wagering in 2019, nearly three years ago. Gov. Kim Reynolds signed Iowa’s sportsbook legislation into law on May 13, 2019.

Casino employees collected the first sports bets in time for the 2019 football season. Starting in 2021, customers could use their smartphones, tablets or computers to sign up for a sportsbook account.

Since those first wagers launched the industry in 2019, Iowa has collected $3.77 billion in sports bets, which generated $15.9 million in taxes.

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