With football season fast approaching, sportsbooks in Pennsylvania enjoyed their best month to date in July.

Per the latest monthly revenue report issued by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB), the Keystone State’s nine sportsbook operators combined to collect $59.33 million in wagering “handle” last month.

That blew away Pennsylvania sports betting’s previous highwater handle mark of $46.33 million set in June.

All told, local sportsbooks won more than $5 million from bettors in July, but the official report shows $2.85 million in revenue after promotional credits were deducted.

The strong July performance also sent just over $1 million into Pennsylvania government coffers through taxes paid by operators.

Rush Street Gaming Rules the Roost

Per the PGCB data, the only two brick and mortar sportsbooks to top $4 million in July handle were SugarHouse and Rivers.

Both are owned by Rush Street Gaming, an Illinois-based casino operator which revealed plans in June to rebrand SugarHouse as Rivers Casino Philadelphia.

SugarHouse launched the state’s first online / mobile sportsbook platform back in June, but as the first casino in the heart of Philadelphia’s metropolitan area, its land-based operation has access to the largest base of local bettors. Even so, sister site Rivers Casino Pittsburgh topped the monthly handle count at $4,416,292, barely pipping SugarHouse and its $4,288,325 figure.

But it was SugarHouse which saw the scoreboard light up in its favor more often, parlaying a lower handle into $530,421 in win revenue to $384,576 for Rivers Pittsburgh.

The only other land-based bet shop to crack the $2 million handle plateau was Parx Casino, located in the Philly suburb of Bensalem. The Parx Sportsbook accounted for $3,550,511 in handle and $414,730 in revenue.

Four other brick and mortar venues – South Philadelphia Race and Sportsbook, Valley Forge Casino Resort, Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course, and Harrah’s Philadelphia – all hovered between $1.7 million and $1.86 million in handle. The same four venues posted revenue totals between $150,074 and $196,188.

For a full look at Pennsylvania’s land-based sportsbook performance in July, see the table below:

July Land-Based Sportsbook Handle and Revenue by Operator

Operator Handle Revenue
Rivers Casino Pittsburgh $4,416,292 $384,576
SugarHouse Casino $4,288,325 $530,421
Parx Casino $3,550,511 $414,730
South Philadelphia Race and Sportsbook $1,864,245 $150,074
Valley Forge Casino Resort $1,788,266 $168,146
Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course $1,772,466 $196,188
Harrah’s Philadelphia $1,700,923 $186,574
Oaks Race and Sportsbook $789,502 $110,162
Presque Isle Downs $162,781 $45,469
TOTAL $20,333,311 $2,186,339


Four Online / Mobile Operators Generate 2/3 of Handle

While the traditional retail sports betting market held its own in July, it was the online / mobile vertical which stole the show in only its second month of operation.

Overall, the four operators which have attached an online / mobile wagering app to their offerings – SugarHouse, Rivers Pittsburgh, Parx, and Valley Forge – generated $38,988,648 in handle on the month. That’s good for 65.7 percent of Pennsylvania’s entire handle haul in July, demonstrating the folly of legislators in states like Arkansas and New York, where sports betting laws that don’t allow for online / mobile betting have recently taken effect.

To put the importance of online / mobile access into perspective, consider that industry leader SugarHouse used its app to attract $22,162,651 in handle – or nearly $2 million more than the entire land-based market combined.

Valley Forge technically finished in last place with $3,259,840 in handle, but its FanDuel operated online / mobile app didn’t launch until July 22. Prorated over a full 31-day month, the FanDuel app’s nine-day performance was worth nearly $12 million in handle, which would’ve made it the runner-up to SugarHouse.

Check below for the full handle and revenue data for Pennsylvania’s online / mobile sportsbook operators.

July Online / Mobile Sportsbook Handle and Revenue by Operator

Operator Handle Revenue
SugarHouse Casino $22,162,651 $540,766
Rivers Casino $9,927,161 ($250,941)*
Parx Casino $3,648,995 $242,244
Valley Forge Casino Resort** $3,259,840 $133,730
TOTAL $38,988,648 $665,798

*Represents a loss after winning wagers were paid

**The FanDuel powered online / mobile sportsbook affiliated with Valley Forge went live on July 22, giving the platform only nine days of operation in July

Jonathan Zaun

One of Gamble Online's first dedicated reporters, Jonathan has spent well over a decade reporting on the gaming industry. While breaking legal news is his main area of expertise, Jonathan is an avid blackjack player & strategist who follows professional poker closely.

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