Colorado Sets New Sports Betting Revenue Highs In November, Powered By NFL And Parlay Bets


Another state, another all-time monthly revenue record for sports betting.

Colorado joined the ever-expanding list of states that recorded their best month in terms of operator revenue when, on Monday, the Department of Revenue’s Division of Gaming reported gross revenue of nearly $36.8 million and adjusted post-promotional revenue of close to $19.2 million for November.

It was the second consecutive month an all-time high was established for gross revenue, with November’s figure a 28.5% increase from the $28.6 million collected in October. The adjusted revenue nearly doubled the previous mark of $11.7 million set in January and more than doubled the nearly $9 million claimed by operators in November 2020.

Overall, 17 of the 20 states that have published November revenue reports have set all-time monthly highs in the post-PASPA era. Louisiana began accepting bets in November, while Mississippi and relative newcomer South Dakota had their second-highest revenue totals since launch.

Colorado handle tailed off to $475.4 million for November, a modest 3.3% decline from October’s record amount of $491.5 million wagered, while the operator win rate of 7.74% was nearly two percentage points higher month over month. Earlier this year Colorado became the seventh state to clear $3 billion in handle for 2021 and it has a chance to surpass $5 billion all-time in December, needing approximately $429 million to reach that milestone.

Though the adjusted revenue accounted for only 52.1% of the gross revenue, the state’s tax receipts came within $18,360 of $2 million. It is just the second time Colorado has generated at least $1 million in taxes in back-to-back months since launching in May 2020, with the other occasion coming in March and April of 2021. The Centennial State has received just shy of $11 million in taxes from sports betting in 2021 and nearly $13.9 million overall.

Parlays and NFL prove winning combo for operators

More than six out of every seven gross revenue dollars originated from two sources in Colorado: NFL wagering and parlay bets. The NFL was the primary driver of handle with $140.3 million, a sharp dip of 18% from October that can mainly be explained away by there being four NFL Sundays in November versus five in October.

Operators, though, regrouped from a rough October to post a 10.3% hold and claim more than $14.4 million from NFL wagers, easily crushing the previous high of $7.5 million set in November 2020. It was the third straight month parlay revenue reached eight figures in Colorado, but the $17.1 million — on a 20.4% win rate that was the highest of any month this year for parlay wagering — also set a new standard by besting the $12.1 million from October.

The popularity of Nikola Jokic and the Nuggets propelled NBA handle to a record $124.7 million, nearly doubling the $63.3 million wagered in October and topping the previous high of $106.9 million in March. NBA bettors performed well, however, as operator revenue was just $2.3 million on a 1.9% hold.

Colorado bettors also shined in wagering on college football and college hoops in November. They came out $251,221 ahead on $29.4 million wagered in the former, while the house netted a paltry $463,673 on the latter from just over $29 million bet.

Table tennis continued to hold sway with nearly $7.8 million wagered in November, but that was also the lowest handle for the niche sport since $6.9 million was bet in February. Operators also had some bounce-back there as the $748,310 in revenue was a 77.8% increase, with the hold surging from 4.1% to 9.6%.

Operators did have to cash out plenty of winning baseball tickets, as the $3.1 million worth of payouts was more than double the $1.4 million in wagers accepted. They fared far better in soccer, clearing $1 million in revenue for just the third time in 19 months of wagering.

Meanwhile, over in Wyoming …

The Wyoming Pari-Mutuel Commission also reported its November numbers Monday, and the Cowboy State set new highs across the board for handle, gross revenue, and adjusted revenue. Handle ticked 1.2% higher to just shy of $11 million in November, the second consecutive month handle reached eight figures.

Gross revenue reached seven figures for the first time, as operators reported winning nearly $1.4 million from bettors while posting a 12.4% hold. After promotional play was removed, taxable sports betting revenue totaled $864,987 — more than triple October’s total of $281,603 — and resulted in taxes of $86,499.

Sport-specific breakouts were not available, but Wyoming has generated nearly $28 million in handle in its first three months of activity, with operators posting close to $3.2 million in revenue with a win rate of 11.4%. November’s strong month pushed adjusted revenue over the $1 million mark.

Chris Altruda has been a sportswriter with ESPN, The Associated Press, and STATS over more than two decades. He recently expanded into covering sports betting and gambling around the Midwest.

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