- Legal sports betting in Colorado has gotten off to a rough start with the lack of engagement leading to new annual revenue estimates.
- New estimates show the state not making enough money to even cover the cost of launching their legal sports betting industry.
DENVER – Mobile sports betting apps in Colorado launched on May 1, when the sporting world has been all but shutdown. So could the state see financial losses in the market in its first year?
Their new fiscal year begins in July and the latest estimates on tax revenue collected from the sports betting industry are between $1.5 and $1.7 million for the year.
That estimate is drastically different from the original $16 million that was expected by lawmakers when the idea of gambling on sports was not yet made a law.
It cost the Centennial State upwards of $2 million to get their legal sports betting market up and running which means that they wouldn’t be able to break even for the first year and incur a loss instead.
Timing Is Everything
Gambling on sporting events was voted into law by the residents of Colorado in November 2019. Before the Coronavirus pandemic came about, May 1 seemed like the perfect time to roll out sports betting platforms because so many different sports would be happening.
However, the pandemic has ceased most sports from continued play leading sportsbooks to create strange bets for their customers to wager on.
Most people thought that the timing for opening would be postponed but Colorado stayed true to their timeline. Retail locations have been unable to open because of COVID-19 closing facilities to prevent the further spread of the virus. A handful of big named mobile sportsbooks launched May 1 but they have not seen the amount of engagement that was initially expected.
Colorado Sports Betting Forecast
It’s only been a week into the state’s new industry but sports betting platforms in Colorado remain optimistic. While the new estimates are on the extremely low end, they have been calculated based on the current market which will change well before the fiscal year ends in July 2021.
The start for sports betting has been a unique one and a slow one because of the offerings at the moment. Until then, the Colorado Limited Gaming Control Commission (CLGCC) has released new events available to wager on with mobile sportsbooks to bring in more bettors.
Major sports have been in talks to resume their regular schedules and that will create more interest in Colorado sports betting. The NFL season is still slated to begin on time and football is the biggest sport in the nation to be gambled on. And with the diehard Denver Broncos fans in the state, betting on the team should be huge.
All of this could lead to much higher future estimates of revenue for the fiscal year that see Colorado making a profit rather than a loss with their sports betting market.
Christina has been writing for as long as she can remember and does dedicated research on the newly regulated sports betting market. She comes from a family of sports lovers that engage in friendly bets from time to time. During the winter months, you can find Christina baking cookies and beating the entire staff at Mario Kart…the N64 version of course.