irginia’s legal sportsbooks could earn as much as $412 million annually, yielding $61.8 million in tax revenue for the state of Virginia according to projections from VirginiaCasinos.com.
The projection forecasts 90 percent of revenue coming from online wagering, with mobile sports betting apps bringing in $375 million annually when Virginia’s market reaches full maturity.
Virginia legalized sports betting in July 2020. The Virginia Lottery regulates the state’s sports wagering industry and will license up to 12 different online sportsbook brands.
The state will tax sports betting revenue at 15%. The first of the state’s legal sportsbooks could launch by early 2021.
Mobile Sports Betting Apps Could Account For 90% Of Revenue
Virginia’s sports betting laws authorize both mobile and retail sports betting in the state. The Virginia Lottery will award 12 mobile sports betting licenses.
Four of those licenses are marked for online-only operators, which can conduct mobile sports betting without a partnership with a land-based casino.
State voters approved the construction of four retail casinos in a November 2020 vote, and those four properties could apply for online sports betting licenses. Richmond voters could approve a fifth land-based casino in the state capital.
Like the online-only operators, retail casino sports betting apps would allow for wagering from anywhere in Virginia.
“Mobile wagering will dominate the Virginia market,” said Geoff Fisk, analyst for VirginiaCasinos.com. “We’ve seen online sports betting account for around 90 percent of revenue in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Illinois.”
“The ability to offer remote wagering from any location in the state expands the potential of sports betting far beyond the scope of retail casinos.”
The online sports betting licenses awarded by the Virginia Lottery will likely go to some of the biggest brands in the sports betting industry. At least 25 different operators have applied for licenses so far.
DraftKings and FanDuel will both likely launch sportsbook apps in Virginia at some point. Two other industry giants, BetRivers and William Hill, already have tie-ins with retail casinos under construction in Virginia.
“Virginia should emerge as the next major sports betting market in the US,” Fisk said. “The proximity to several different pro sports franchises makes it a natural hub for sports betting. The big players in the industry will definitely want their share of that market.”