Indiana Approves Barstool Sportsbook

The Indiana Gaming Commission (IGC) has come out in approval of operator Penn National Gaming’s application to provide mobile gaming in the Hoosier state via the popular Barstool Sportsbook application. The move follows the launch of Barstool Sportsbook in states such as Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Illinois, with Virginia also set to join the ranks.

Downtown Indianapolis, Indiana, featuring prominent buildings and skyscrapers.

Barstool Sportsbook has been approved to launch in the state of Indiana by the Indiana Gaming Commission (IGC), following Penn National Gaming’s application. ©12019/Pixabay

Kambi-Powered Apps Set to Launch on May 18th

The U.S. state of Indiana’s main gaming body, the Indiana Gaming Commission (IGC), has announced that it has approved casino and racetrack operator Penn National Gaming’s application to launch mobile gaming offerings in the state through the popular Barstool Sportsbook application.

As a result of the approval, Penn National Gaming is planning to launch its Kambi-powered apps once it receives all necessary regulatory sign-offs on Tuesday, May 18th, 2021, across multiple storefronts and devices, such as iOS, Android, and desktop devices.

Barstool Sportsbook is slowly but surely making its way across much of the Midwest, having already launched in states such as Michigan, Pennsylvania and, most recently, Illinois. Indiana is therefore the fourth state to provide mobile wagering via the Barstool Sportsbook app, with Virginia set to join these ranks in the near future.

Commenting on the recent announcement, Penn National president and chief executive Jay Snowden welcomed the launch of Barstool Sportsbook ahead of the NBA playoffs:“We are thrilled to be launching our online Barstool Sportsbook in Indiana at the start of the NBA’s new playoff format.”

Snowden also cited the success of Penn’s retail Barstool Sportsbook offerings as he welcomed the platform’s expansion in Indiana:

“Our retail Barstool Sportsbooks at Ameristar Casino East Chicago and Hollywood Casino Lawrenceburg have been very well received by our customers since opening this past December, and now Hoosiers from across the state will be able to engage with Dave Portnoy, Dan ‘Big Cat’ Katz, and all of the Barstool personalities through the Barstool Sportsbook app.”

Promotional Offers Arriving Alongside App Launch

Barstool Sportsbook’s launch in the Hoosier state, courtesy of operator Penn National Gaming, is also set to feature a series of promotional offers alongside it, according to Penn’s recent press release. 

These will include offers such as risk-free betting, parlay insurance and a diverse selection of options to bet on the upcoming NBA playoffs, as well as motor racing highlight the Indianapolis 500 — the latter of which is scheduled to take place on May 30th, 2021.

Chief executive and president of Penn National Gaming Jay Snowden thanked the Indiana Gaming Commission (IGC) for its approval of the use of Barstool Sportsbook in Indiana, characterizing the launch as an “important step” for the operator’s growth into becoming a leading single-channel gaming provider, while hinting at future launches scheduled for later in 2021.

“As the only gaming operator with a fully integrated sports media and entertainment partner, we have the unique ability to attract new and existing Penn National customers to enjoy our retail and interactive gaming, sports betting and entertainment offerings, as evidenced by our performance to-date in Illinois, Michigan and Pennsylvania. Our launch in Indiana is another important step in our Company’s evolution into the leading omni-channel gaming provider, and we are eager to leverage the building momentum for the Barstool Sportsbook app with the additional launches we have planned for 2021.”Jay Snowden, President, Chief Executive, Penn National Gaming

Penn National Experienced YoY Rise in Revenue

With the launch of Barstool Sportsbook in Indiana now imminent, Penn National Gaming is sure to prolong its continued growth in the sports betting market, which its recent quarterly revenue report seems to indicate is already well underway.

In the three months leading up to March 31st, the casino and racetrack provider reported a 14.2% year-on-year increase in revenue, totaling $1.27 billion. The Barstool Sportsbook platform in particular had registered over 400,000 customers, who put down over $660 million in stakes, with the brand generating over $61 million revenue by itself.

With the widespread impact of Covid-19 restrictions, as well as disastrous winter weather conditions, being deeply felt across the American South, Penn National chief executive Jay Snowden celebrated the operator’s sudden revenue growth in a recent press release:

“Despite COVID-related restrictions and closures in January and harsh winter weather in the South segment in February, visitation and length of play continue to improve across all age segments of our player database. Moreover, we saw volumes in the month of March that we have not seen since 2019.”

Indiana Sports Betting Market Still Generating Low Bets; GGR is Rising

Furthermore, the sports betting market in Indiana also saw strong year-on-year growth during the month of April, despite overall bets taking a severe hit due to the shutdown of physical locations and the suspension of sporting matches due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

Indiana sportsbook operators pooled in $236.4 million in generated bets during April, which was down 25.4% from $316.7 million in March, marking the lowest monthly handle for the industry since October 2020.

However when adjusted, April’s bets resulted in a gross gaming revenue of $20.1 million which, while down 23.8% from March’s total of $26.4 million, is a marked difference from the previous year, when online sportsbooks in April 2020 generated merely $26.3 million in wagered bets.

Leading analyst at PlayIndiana Jessica Welman accounted for the uneven performance of Indiana’s sports betting market due to the irregular nature of 2020:

“Even a high volume of regular season baseball and NBA basketball games can’t make up for a calendar devoid of NFL and college football games, or a major betting event like the NCAA Tournament. Because the pandemic turned the 2020 sports schedule on its head, Indiana hasn’t really experienced a full year of normal sports betting activity. But there are normal seasonal ebbs and flows in sports betting, and this is the start of what is historically the slowest period of every year.”Jessica Welman, Lead Analyst, PlayIndiana

Barstool Sportsbook Recently Launched in Illinois

Much like with the Indiana Gaming Commission’s recent approval — Barstool Sportsbook was welcomed into the state of Illinois with an approval arriving from the Illinois Gaming Board in early March 2021.

Barstool Sportsbook can now count itself as the sixth mobile sports betting operator active in Illinois, joining the ranks of DraftKings, FanDuel, and BetRivers. Barstool Sportsbook owner and casino operator Penn National Gaming used the Illinois launch to provide players with special first-time benefits, such as odds boosts on local teams playing in the 2021 World Series, basketball bet boosts for March Madness, as well as a $1,000 risk-free bet.

Barstool Sportsbook is an increasingly popular sports betting platform birthed by a partnership between leading gambling provider Penn National Gaming and sports media group Barstool Sports. In January 2020, Penn National acquired 36% of Barstool Sports.

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