Virginia sports bettors won’t have to wait much longer for legal sportsbooks to launch in the Old Dominion. State lawmakers aim for an early 2021 launch for Virginia’s sportsbooks, possibly in time for Super Bowl LVI.
Both online and retail sportsbooks will operate in Virginia. Virginia Casinos estimates that sports betting could bring in $412 million in annual revenue when the industry reaches full maturity.
That projection of $412 million would result in $61.8 million in annual tax revenue to the state.
Virginia Sports Betting – A Look Into The Numbers
All sports betting revenue, both retail and online, will be taxed by the state at a 15% rate. The Virginia Lottery will oversee state-regulated sportsbooks, which hit the market as part of a new era of legal gambling in the state.
Legal sports betting went into effect on July 1, 2020. The Virginia Lottery will award up to 12 online sports betting licenses.
Four of those dozen licenses will go to online-only operators. Some of the other eight licenses could be awarded to land-based casinos under construction in Virginia.
Whether as standalone online apps or as license partners to retail casinos, mobile sportsbooks should provide the bulk of sports wagering revenue. Virginia Casinos estimates that 90% of overall sports betting revenue will come from online sports betting apps.
That projection estimates that mobile sports betting will bring in $375 million annually, bringing in more than $56 million in taxes to Virginia.
Mobile Wagering At The Heart Of The Booming Sports Betting Market
Virginia voters gave the green light for the construction of four land-based casinos in a November 2020 vote. A fifth casino could also open in Richmond, with a public vote on that matter on schedule for 2021.
All five of these potential casinos could apply for online sports betting licenses. In addition to on-site retail sportsbooks, Virginia’s land-based casinos could offer mobile sports betting apps that allow wagering from anywhere within state borders.
Virginia regulations allow for up to a dozen online sportsbook licenses, and the state will almost certainly award all 12 licenses. At least 25 different companies have applied for a mobile sports betting license from the Virginia Lottery.
Virginia Casinos expects the Old Dominion State to develop into one of the most competitive sports betting markets in the US. Some of the biggest brands in the industry are on their way to Virginia to grab a piece of the newest sports wagering hub in the US.
Bolstered by brands like DraftKings, FanDuel, BetRivers, and William Hill, mobile sports betting revenue shattered records in New Jersey and Pennsylvania in 2020. In both states, mobile wagering accounted for 90% of overall sports betting revenue through the record-setting second half of the year.
Virginia Sports Betting: Which Brands Are On The Way To The Market?
Virginia will likely be home to a large number of sports betting apps. Here are some of the top contenders for a Virginia launch.
One of the top two sports betting brands in the US, DraftKings Sportsbook emerges as one of the most popular sportsbooks in any state in which it launches.
DraftKings’ expansion into sports betting will include around a dozen states should DraftKings Virginia launch as expected in 2021. DraftKings Sportsbook could either launch as an online-only app or partner with one of Virginia’s upcoming land-based casinos.
The nation’s top online sportsbook by market share, FanDuel Sportsbook will almost surely add Virginia to its growing empire of US states.
FanDuel Sportsbook stands as the most popular online sportsbook in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania, the two most competitive online sports betting markets. FanDuel would contend for a big part of the Virginia market should it launch as expected.
Owned by gaming company Rush Street Interactive, BetRivers Sportsbook will almost certainly come to Virginia as a land-based casino license partner.
Rush Street Gaming is approved to construct one of the four retail casinos voted in by the Virginia public. A $300 million Rush Street-owned property will open in Portsmouth, opening up the opportunity for BetRivers to launch in Virginia.
A merger between William Hill and Caesars Entertainment likely brings a William Hill online sportsbook to the Virginia market.
Caesars Entertainment has a $400 million land-based casino on the way to Danville, which should pave the way for a William Hill mobile sports betting app.