Pennsylvania Sports Betting: A November Record Breaker for Handle



  • November handle hits $934.1M
  • Resilient growth in PA sports betting
  • Challenges and opportunities in a competitive landscape

The Pennsylvania sports betting scene continues its upward trajectory, breaking handle records for the second consecutive month in November. Despite a slight dip in revenue, the industry's resilience and sustained growth remain noteworthy. This comprehensive exploration delves into the details of the November figures, offering insights into the dynamics of online sports betting in Pennsylvania.

November Handle Record 

Pennsylvania sports betting operators set a new handle record in November, surpassing the previous month's figure. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) reported a staggering $934.1 million in total bets, reflecting a notable 12.7% month-over-month increase and an impressive 18.4% year-over-year growth. This achievement further cements Pennsylvania's position as a key player in the thriving U.S. online gambling market.

Revenue Fluctuations 

While the handle saw a remarkable surge, revenue figures told a different tale. Despite the record wagers, PA online sportsbooks generated $49.1 million in revenue, marking a 33.3% month-over-month decrease and a 30% year-over-year decrease.

Key Metrics and Analysis 

Handle and Revenue Overview 

  • Handle: $934.1 million (12.7% MoM increase; 18.4% YoY increase)
  • Revenue: $49.1 million (33.3% MoM decrease; 30% YoY decrease)
  • Adjusted Gross Revenue (taxable): $12.1 million
  • Hold: 5.3% (down from 8.9% last month) 

Online Dominance 

  • Percent of bets placed online: 93.9%

Promotional Activity 

  • Promotional credits: $36.3 million

Tax Contributions 

  • November sports betting taxes: $4.4 million
  • State and local entities: $257,680.70

Top Sports Betting App Performance 

  • Top sports betting app by handle: FanDuel Sportsbook PA with $384.1 million
  • Top sports betting app by revenue: FanDuel Sportsbook PA with $19.1 million

Analysis of November Figures 

Market Maturation 

Pennsylvania's sports betting market demonstrated its ongoing maturation with back-to-back monthly handle records. The state's ability to consistently set new highs indicates sustained enthusiasm among bettors. However, the challenge lies in maintaining this momentum as football season, a key driver of wagers, winds down.

Revenue Challenges 

Despite the record handle, Pennsylvania sportsbooks faced revenue challenges in November. With a mere 5.3% hold, operators recorded a significant decrease from the previous month's 8.9%. The hope for more upsets in December and January suggests that sportsbooks anticipate a rebound in revenue during the upcoming months.

Promotional Spending 

A notable aspect of November's figures is the substantial promotional spending by Pennsylvania sportsbooks. The record-setting $36.3 million in promotions reflects the competitive landscape, with operators vying for the attention of bettors. While promotional activity contributed to the record handle, its impact on overall revenue remains a key consideration.

Operator Performance 

Examining the performance of individual operators provides valuable insights into the competitive landscape:

FanDuel: Dominated both handle and revenue, reinforcing its stronghold in the Pennsylvania market.

  • DraftKings: Maintained a strong position with impressive handle and revenue figures.
  • Barstool: Noteworthy handle but faced challenges with a negative revenue figure.
  • BetMGM, Caesars, BetRivers, PlaySugarHouse, betParx, and others: Contributed to the overall handle and revenue landscape, showcasing the diversity of the market.

Competitive Landscape: Navigating Challenges and Opportunities 

While Pennsylvania sports betting celebrates consecutive record handles, operators face challenges and opportunities in a highly competitive landscape. Despite the dip in revenue in November, the market's robust growth signals room for further expansion. This section delves into the competitive dynamics, exploring promotional spending, individual operator performances, and the impact of seasonal shifts. As the industry adapts to the evolving preferences of bettors, operators strategize for sustained success. With the NFL playoffs on the horizon, the coming months will test the resilience of Pennsylvania's sports betting market and set the tone for 2024.

Operator Breakdown 

A detailed breakdown of handle, revenue, hold, and taxes for each operator in November 2023 underscores the varied performance across the industry:

(Licensee, Online Brand, Handle, Revenue, Hold, Taxes)

  • Valley Forge - FanDuel: $384,083,610, $19,062,650, 5.0%, $3,022,623
  • Hollywood Meadows - DraftKings: $253,073,537, $13,947,467, 5.5%, $2,835,497
  • Hollywood Penn National - Barstool: $66,826,062, $6,981,824, 10.4%, ($2,824,184)
  • Hollywood Morgantown - BetMGM: $54,304,013, $1,896,837, 3.5%, $73,263
  • Harrah's Philadelphia - Caesars: $47,602,201, $1,491,670, 3.1%, $359,583
  • Rivers Pittsburgh - BetRivers: $35,987,333, $1,603,172, 4.5%, $209,419
  • Rivers Philadelphia - PlaySugarHouse: $26,019,491, $824,759, 3.2%, $135,711
  • Parx - betParx: $24,474,910, $1,241,194, 5.1%, $363,359
  • Hollywood York - PointsBet: $13,033,168, $883,673, 6.8%, $75,207
  • Live Philadelphia - Betway: $9,596,133, $244,273, 2.5%, $87,938
  • Mohegan Pennsylvania - Unibet: $9,554,327, $220,522, 2.3%, $30,590
  • Live Pittsburgh: $2,034,544, $186,691, 9.2%, $67,209
  • Presque Isle Downs: $1,928,956, $125,165, 6.5%, $45,059
  • Wind Creek: $1,813,732, $135,280, 7.5%, $47,969
  • South Philadelphia Race & Sportsbook: $1,739,396, $161,918, 9.3%, $58,290
  • Mohegan Lehigh Valley: $1,175,238, $104,861, 8.9%, $37,750
  • Mount Airy - Fox Bet: $834,031, $21,981, 2.6%, $7,913
  • Parx Shippensburg: $49,471, $14,045, 28.4%, $5,056
  • Parx Malvern: - - - -

Total: $934,130,151.55, $49,147,979.21, 5.3%, $4,638,252 

The November sports betting figures for Pennsylvania paint a picture of a resilient and dynamic market. As the industry navigates the changing seasons and gears up for exciting events, the Keystone State's position as a major player in online gambling remains robust. The record-breaking handle sets the stage for further growth and competition in the months to come. As operators strategize for sustained success, the coming NFL playoffs will test the resilience of Pennsylvania's sports betting market and set the tone for 2024.

A huge sports fan; locally, many know me as the guy who does the PA for our high school football team on Friday nights. Having grown up in Michigan, I am a sports fan of all the Detroit teams, and at the college level, I love Michigan State sports. I have covered sports betting, iGaming and casino industry news for many well known websites.