Louisiana’s Sports Betting Potential Coming to Light
Louisiana’s Sports Betting Potential Coming to Light
Fans look on during the spring game at Tiger Stadium. Carmen Mandato/Getty Images/AFP

Louisiana is preparing to finalize the rules and regulations for their legal sports betting industry. While not signed into law yet, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards is said to be waiting on a final draft, ready to put his stamp on what is expected to be a robust market.

In the leadup there has been a host of reports on the potential of the Louisiana market. The latest comes from PlayLouisiana.com whose lead analyst, Eric Ramsey identified some strengths of the Louisiana market and said: “Louisiana should be able to outperform its relatively small population. In fact, as a market Louisiana shares many of the same attributes that have made New Jersey and Nevada sports betting meccas. The state has long been home to a thriving casino industry, New Orleans itself can draw tourists from all over the country, and Louisiana is not bordered by another state that offers both retail and online sports betting.”

What We Are Looking At

Louisiana isn’t the biggest market, but its potential has most involved excited. Currently the state has 4.6 million residents, which ranks 24th in the nation. With that, expectations are that tourism will make up a reasonable part of the Louisiana sports betting market.

On the plus side, Louisiana is home to one of the more rabid fan bases in the nation. The NFL’s New Orleans Saints, the NBA’s New Orleans Pelicans and one of the most beloved college sports programs in the nation, the LSU Tigers should generate their fair share of wagering interest.

Louisiana is occasional host of the biggest betting sporting event on US soil, the Super Bowl, it is home to games in the annual March Madness tournament and also hosts its share of College Bowl games.

Eric Ramsey said of the Louisiana market: “… the state has a passionate local fan base that serves every market. The bottom line is that most markets in the United States do not have a collection of Louisiana’s positive attributes.”

More About That Tourism Connection

With a relatively small population, Louisiana will be reliant on tourists to bolster their legal sports betting scene. The Louisiana scene need not look further than Heavyweight New Jersey market which gains roughly 25% of their monthly handles from New York bettors.

Texas is one such neighboring state that Louisiana hopes to take advantage of. Texas has an immense population and doesn’t seem anywhere near legalizing their own legal sports betting platform.

“New Orleans is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the United States, with a regular flow of tourists from nearby big cities like Houston, and a legitimate betting state like the retail-only Mississippi. Even at first, you should benefit.” Eric Ramsey said.

More Reasons for Optimism

Louisiana regulators have set up their potential platform for success, which has struck an overly optimistic tone among analysts.

Regulators have created an attractive market for elite-level providers to join. All of the top betting companies are expected to become part of the Louisiana scene, creating a market that will be good for both competing providers and the customers that will use their products.

Those same regulators vow to have an open market as well, one that will allow bars, restaurants and truck stops to offer legal sports betting opportunities. If all goes as planned, Louisiana will become one of the most accessible sports betting markets in the country with over 1000 places to place a bet.

“The basic framework will be appealing for sportsbook operators, and that will help the state reach its potential,” said Dustin Gouker. “Even more, Louisiana set up a relatively open and competitive market, which benefits consumers while making the industry a reliable revenue producer for the state for years to come.”

At Long Last, the Predicted Numbers

The Louisiana market is expected to be robust, and it is expected to be profitable, right off the bat. According to PlayLouisiana, the market will be able to “use rich natural advantages to one day transform into a sports betting market that will attract more than $2.5 billion in annual wagering and more than $200 million in operator revenue.”

When a 15% tax rate for mobile betting apps and 10% tax rate for the state’s retail sports betting platform are factored in, with the $200 million in estimated profits, a projected $30 million in tax revenue annually could be generated for Louisiana state and local coffers. That is assuming that Louisiana sportsbooks can maintain the national-average 8% hold.

Now They Need to Launch

The momentum to launch Louisiana’s legal sports betting scene has been impressive since voters in the state paved the way for their own platform on the November 3 Election ballot. Some parishes in the state voted the platform down, but the majority of Louisiana will see some form of sports betting sooner than later.

With the passage of a legal sports betting platform into law seemingly around the corner, the launch date seems to be the last domino to fall. While November 9, the start of the NFL season is a goal, it’s looking more like the end of the year before Louisianans place their first legal sports bet.

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