The final month of 2022 was another milestone for Arkansas sportsbooks.
The three casinos in Arkansas that operate mobile and retail sportsbooks combined to break state records for sports betting handle, mobile handle and revenue in December.
December was the fourth month in a row Arkansas reset its mark for total sports wagering handle. Last month, the total handle, or amount bet, was $30,936,485, a 1.2% increase from November’s $30,576,009.
And the online Arkansas November betting handle record of $24,391,544 also only lasted a month, as the state recorded $25,159,715 in mobile sports betting wagers for December, a 3.1% hike.
Arkansas Sports Betting December Analysis
The state has broken the record for handle each month since September, when Oaklawn launched its sportsbook in conjunction with the Kambi Group.
That month, Arkansas recorded $21.2 million in total sports wagers. Since then, bettors in the state wagered $26.9 million in October, and broke the $30 million barrier in both November and December. Saracen Casino Resort in Pine Bluff takes the lion’s share of wagers.
Saracen launched its mobile sportsbook in May and keeps breaking its own records for handle — last month the facility took $16 million in sports bets. Southland had nearly $6.4 million in sports betting handle and Oaklawn had almost $2.8 million.
December also set a state record for net win, or revenue, on sports betting.
Last month the revenue was $3,409,972, up 13.7% from November’s $3 million mark. The Arkansas September betting revenue was $3,208,032, a record that stood for three months.
Arkansas Sports Betting, December vs. November
Year-End Arkansas Sportsbook Numbers
For all of 2022, the total sports betting handle was $185,458,483 and the revenue was $17,922,004. Arkansas had a staggered launch for mobile sports wagering operators, unlike some states such as Ohio or New York, which had many if not all operators starting at the same time.
One drawback in The Natural State is a law stipulating that sports betting operators must share 51% of their revenue with casinos. That rate is much lower in most states. New York has a 51% tax rate on sports betting, but that market is so big that name-brand sportsbooks swallowed that pill and chose to operate there. A state with a population of just over 3 million and no pro sports teams isn’t in the same situation, so major national operators — ones that sports fans see advertised on commercials — have bypassed Arkansas.
Stay tuned to BetArkansas.com to see if the situation changes and consumers get options such as a DraftKings Arkansas Sportsbook, or other big names such as BetMGM, Caesars and FanDuel.
For now, Arkansas casinos have their own sportsbooks. Nearby Kansas, with almost exactly the same population, raked in more than $10 million in sports betting revenue in December alone, thanks largely to its multiple mobile wagering options and setup which major national operators found appealing.
Arkansas Casino Numbers Also Rise
The three casinos in the state combined for gaming handle of $608,123,368 for December, a boost of 11.9% from November’s $543,404,989. The revenue increased at an even greater rate, 12.7%, rising from $41,207,812 the previous month to $46,449,375 in December.
Saracen became the first casino in Arkansas to offer a multi-state progressive slot machine when it introduced the Wheel of Fortune slot game in late autumn.