Strong First Year of Legal Sports Betting in Colorado

Colorado sports fans bet a total of $2.34 billion in the first year of legal sports betting in the state, while the gross gaming revenue for the 12-month period was $148.1 million.

Legal sports betting began in Colorado on May 1, 2020, with fans allowed to bet both online and at retail sportsbooks. Due to coronavirus restrictions, there was a slow start to the market with retail venues closed and a number of events cancelled.

However, since major sports resumed last August, there was steady month-on-month growth in sports betting figures all the way through to January 2021, which saw punters bet $326.9 million on sports, the strongest month yet.

Betting dropped to $266.5 million in February before growing to $301 million in March. Early figures for April suggest the figure will be $245.3 million.

January was also a record month for operator revenue. There was total gross gaming revenue of $23.1 million from sports betting, while last month’s revenues are thought to be $18.3 million.


It seems that basketball has been the most popular sport to bet on, attracting $435.2 million in bets over the year, or 20.9% of all bets placed. This was followed by football, with $383.5 million bet, or 18.4%, and then college basketball with $193.9 million bet, or 9.3%. Parlay and combination betting was also popular, with $339.4 million bet this way across the year.

The Division of Gaming has published figures showing that the year brought in $65.9 million in tax from legal sports betting. By the end of April, there were 20 online operators in Colorado and 16 retail sportsbooks.

Dan Hartman Division of Gaming Director

The first year of sports betting exceeded our expectations, especially after we launched amid a worldwide pandemic that shuttered the casinos, the industry, and Colorado. Looking back on a year ago, I don’t believe any of us expected to be where we are with our numbers and our operations. Colorado is setting the benchmark for what a healthy, regulated legalized sports betting market can look like in the US, and we will continue to be known for our regulatory leadership.

Dan HartmanDivision of Gaming Director

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