Louisiana’s Online Sportsbooks Could Produce $219 Million In Annual Revenue

Louisiana lawmakers hope for legal sports betting to launch in the state sometime in 2021. The most optimistic launch projections see sportsbooks going live in time for the 2021-22 football season.

Both online and retail sports betting were approved by the Louisiana State Legislature this summer. Up to 41 online sports betting licenses and 20 retail sportsbooks could eventually operate in the Pelican State.

Louisiana’s deep sports tradition and status as a casino gaming destination make it a prime market for a thriving sports betting industry.

Louisiana Sharp projects that legal online sportsbooks could produce as much as $175 in annual revenue when the market reaches full maturity in Louisiana. Factoring in retail sportsbooks located within casinos and racetracks, Louisiana could bring in $219 million in overall sports betting revenue annually.

The state’s sports betting bill calls for a 15% tax on mobile sports betting revenue and 10% on land-based revenue. Based on our projections, sports betting would allow the state to collect $30.6 million in annual taxes.

Louisiana: Prime Setting For Sports Betting Success

Louisiana’s enthusiasm for sports is undeniable. The fanbases for both the LSU football program and the New Orleans Saints rank among the most fervent in the nation.

The consistent success of LSU puts the Fighting Tigers in the middle of some of the biggest college football games on the annual calendar. NFL matchups involving the Saints might mark the only sports contests that rival the importance of LSU games in the eyes of Louisiana sports fans.

Sports are a huge deal in Louisiana, and sports betting will draw significant interest in the Pelican State.

Louisiana also represents one of the biggest casino gaming hubs in the US south. With more than 15 land-based casinos operating in the state, Louisiana’s casinos draw a healthy number of visitors from out of state each year.

Even without factoring in casinos, New Orleans persists as one of the most prominent tourist destinations in the US. When sports betting goes live in Louisiana, travelers to the state will enjoy access to legal online sportsbooks as soon as they cross into state lines.

The November 2020 election saw 55 of Louisiana’s 64 parishes vote “yes” on legal sports betting. Mobile sportsbook apps will be legally accessible from anywhere within those 55 parishes.

Online Sports Betting Will Fuel The Louisiana Market

The Louisiana Gaming Control Board can award up to 41 online sports betting licenses and up to 20 retail sports betting licenses.

While Louisiana hosts one of the most viable land-based casino industries in the US, online wagering will drive the state’s sports betting fortunes. A sports betting boom has unfolded in the US over the past three years, with mobile wagering apps at the center of that surge.

New Jersey and Pennsylvania, two states at the forefront of the US sports betting industry, share similarities to Louisiana. All three states host a thriving land-based casino industry.

In both New Jersey and Pennsylvania, online sportsbooks have produced at least 85% of overall sports betting revenue in 2021. Louisiana revenue trends should emerge in a similar fashion.

At full maturity, Louisiana Sharp projects that online sports betting alone can produce $175 million in annual revenue when the market reaches full maturity. Taxed at 15%, mobile sports betting apps would yield $26.25 million in annual tax revenue according to our projection.

Land-based sportsbooks could bring another $44 million in annual operator revenue. Retail sports betting revenue, taxed at 10%, adds another $4.4 million to Louisiana’s overall tax collection on sports betting.

How long it takes for the market to reach full maturity depends on several factors. The Louisiana Gaming Control Board must vet and approve all potential sports betting brands before products can launch in the state.

It might be ambitious to assume that the state ends up approving 41 different online sports betting brands. The state’s approach to sports betting puts the framework for a competitive sports betting market in place, however, and that model has thrived in states like New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

Louisiana will take shape as one of the nation’s most dynamic sports betting markets. With no bordering states currently offering legal online wagering, the state should emerge as the south’s most important sports betting hub.

About the Author

Geoffrey Fisk

Geoff Fisk is a San Diego-based freelance writer, specializing in the poker and gambling industries. He’s written for numerous platforms and has traveled the globe as a live poker tournament reporter. Geoff’s interests include the legal online poker industry in the U.S. and abroad.