Ever since the Supreme Court voted to repeal the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 in 2018, essentially making the legality of sports betting a decision to be made by each individual state, DraftKings has been one of the most major players in the new and growing industry.
Each state that has voted to bring sports betting into its borders has had DraftKings following closely behind to take advantage of a fresh market ripe to be sown and harvested.
How DraftKings has fared in Illinois
Despite operating in online sports betting since March 2020, officially making it a “mature market,” Illinois is one of the few elder states in this industry that continue to see its handle growing. March 2023 saw Illinois hold its highest number since it legalized sports betting with just over $1.072 billion.
DraftKings has clearly staked its claim in Illinois, ranking first all-time among sportsbooks in total handle at over $7 billion and second in revenue at just over $450 million. FanDuel ranks second in handle at just under $6 billion and first in revenue at nearly $650 million, for comparison.
Not only has DraftKings had a historical hold on sports betting in the state of Illinois, it has maintained its dominance inside the state alongside FanDuel well into today. In January 2023, operating out of the Casino Queen East St. Louis, they reported a handle of $336,933,843 and raked in revenue worth $23,860,260.
Those numbers fell quite a bit in the following month, likely due to the close of NFL football, as the handle dipped to $278,866,173 and its revenue dropped to $16,347,502.
With March Madness though, DraftKings, and the rest of the sportsbooks in Illinois, saw a massive jump compared to February. DraftKings’s handle jumped back up to $334,935,998 and the revenue followed suit, hitting $31,330,487.
It’s clear from the reporting that Illinois has consistently remained one of DraftKings’s most successful territories. The large population in the state boasts a large number of sports fans, specifically those willing to wager on their teams in the Chicago Bears, Bulls, and Blackhawks.
How DraftKings in Illinois compares to other states
For comparison, DraftKings Illinois performed nearly as well in March 2023 as they did in New York. DraftKings reported a handle of over $589 million and revenue of over $52 million in the same month. Illinois nearly stacks up with New York and quite easily clears most of DraftKings’s other domains.
The sportsbook handled a shade under $188 million in the same month in Pennsylvania, while reporting revenue of just over $15 million. In Ohio, those numbers showed $161 million and $17 million respectively for DraftKings.
DraftKings has clearly made its presence felt in Illinois, as the state continues to be one of the sportsbooks most successful markets. With the market continuing to grow in the state, it’d be surprising if DraftKings didn’t follow along with the trend.
Where is sports betting with DraftKings legal?
25 United States territories currently allow online sports betting for their residents, with Vermont, North Carolina, Maine and Kentucky set to join the growing group.
Of those 25 territories, DraftKings is fully operational in 21 of them, with only Montana, Nebraska, South Dakota, and Nevada have legalized online sports betting but not under the umbrella of DraftKings’s current reach.
Of all the states that DraftKings is currently operating within, Illinois is one of their biggest markets, as the state repeatedly ranks in the top two in sports betting activity in the United States.
As of June 2, 2023, Illinois has held the fourth-highest handle in the country, cracking over $21.5 billion and drawing in over $1.7 billion in revenue, just shy of New York in both categories which have marked $22 billion and $1.86 billion respectively.
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