Colorado sports gambling industry reports over $1B in wagers

January 26, 2021 GMT

DENVER (AP) — Colorado’s new sports betting industry reported nearly $1.2 billion in wagers from May to December 2020.

This is despite the fact that the industry was legalized in the state starting May 1, when few professional sports were being held because of shutdowns from the coronavirus pandemic.

Colorado residents placed a record $284.5 million in wagers in December, its largest month by 23%, the state Department of Revenue said on Monday.

American football was the most lucrative sport with nearly $90 million in wagers. Professional basketball ($42.9 million), NCAA basketball ($35.2 million), NCAA football ($14.9 million) and table tennis ($10.9 million) were the next most popular sports.

The state said it collected more than $3.4 million in taxes from sports gambling in 2020.

“Hitting the $1 billion mark is a milestone event for the department, leading us to believe that the trust and competition in the industry are leading bettors from the black market to the regulated market,” said Dan Hartman, director of the Colorado Division of Gaming, in a statement. “We believe the legal marketplace is having and will continue to have a positive impact on Colorado.”

In December, digital sportsbooks accounted for 99% of all bets, the Denver Post reported. Retail sportsbooks at casinos in Black Hawk, Central City and Cripple Creek were responsible for the remaining $4.1 million.