Online Sportsbooks in Michigan Suffer Year-Over-Year Decline in Betting Handle

Jessica Aletor
Jessica Aletor


  • Retail sports betting in Detroit and online sportsbooks in Michigan generated a total of $338.1 million worth of betting handle in April.
  • The Michigan online sports betting industry recorded a 10% drop in wagering handle compared to April 2022.
  • FanDuel Sportsbook nears $3 billion lifetime online betting handle after a combined $534 million in first quarter of 2023.

March brought some respite for online sportsbooks in Michigan after the industry recorded an impressive 11% increase in betting handle from the previous month. However, it appears sports betting in the Great Lakes State is back to its declining trend after the Michigan Gaming Control Board published figures for April 2023.

For the third consecutive month, Michigan online sportsbooks generated less betting handle than they did in the same period last year. About half of the sports betting operators in the state also recorded declines of up to 20% in wagering handle on a year-over-year comparison basis.

Michigan Sports Betting Handle Drops 10% From April 2022

Retail sports betting has posted disappointing financials since the final months of 2022. Not only has this trend continued into 2023, but online sports betting seems to be following the same trajectory. Michigan online sports betting handle fell in January, February, and now once again in April. Collectively, online and retail sportsbooks posted $338.1 million in betting handle in April 2023, indicating a $57 million decline from April 2022.

A cumulative view of sports betting handle in the state from the start of the year has also been negative. The first four months of 2023 brought in $1.55 billion as against $1.72 million pooled within the same period in 2022, indicating a 9.7% drop. Also, with April’s online sports betting handle of $322.8 million, Michigan marked the fifth consecutive month of a year-over-year decline.

April was also the third consecutive month where Michigan sportsbooks generated $40 million less online wagers than it did in the same month last year.

Caesars Sportsbook, Others Down Over 20% in Betting Handle

As expected, the drop in sports betting handle is not isolated, and merely reflects the activity levels with individual sportsbooks. In the first three months of 2023, as many as six sportsbooks witnessed a decline in handle by at least 20%.

BetMGM Sportsbook MI, as a case in point, recorded $90 million less online wagers throughout 2023 than it did in the first four months of 2022. The leading sportsbooks generated $395.3 million in betting handle between January to April 2022 but has only amassed wagers worth $304.6 million this year.

Other sportsbooks with comparable declines include Caesars Sportsbook Michigan with a 23.1% year-over-year decline. Fox Bet Sportsbook and Barstool Sportsbook recorded gargantuan negative figures with their betting handles going down 40.8% and 38.6%, respectively, from last year. FireKeepers, betParx and PointsBet Sportsbooks are three other operators that posted negative year-over-year figures.

FanDuel and DraftKings Shine as Only Gainers in April 2024

Two of Michigan’s top sports betting sites have remained unfazed despite the downward trend across the industry. FanDuel Sportsbook MI saw the highest increase in sports betting handle across all 15 sportsbooks in Michigan. The operator generated $534.4 million worth of wagers in the first three months of 2023 and is now on course to top $3 billion lifetime online betting handle.

DraftKings Sportsbook MI came a distant second with a total online betting handle of $394.2 million in 2023, albeit a decrease from the same period in 2022. However, DraftKings recorded the highest revenue growth over the same period in comparison. Its revenue in 2023 grew by $10.8 million to $27.7 million. FanDuel also experienced a $25.3 million positive growth, generating $71.2 million in revenue in 2023 so far.

Other sportsbooks have unfortunately been unable to recreate the revenue growth shown by these two leading sites. BetMGM saw a $10.8 million decrease in its revenue year-over-year from the first four months of 2022. About eight other sportsbooks witnessed massive decline, including Barstool Sportsbook that was down $6.5 million from the period in review.

Michigan online sports betting generally posted a better revenue outlook than its wagering handle in April, and indeed the entirety of the year so far. Revenue from sportsbooks amounted to $36.3 million in April only, and $137 million in the first four months of the year.

These four-month figures are indicative of a 16% growth from a year-over-year perspective. However, considering that the bulk of the revenue have come from only two sportsbooks raises some concern about the general profitability of the industry in the Wolverine State.

Jessica is a news contributor to Gamble Online Michigan. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Economics but has over three years of experience working in the hospitality and gambling industry. Despite her core finance and investment banking background, she has been a casino feature writer for N1 Interactive Limited and multiple gambling affiliate sites. Her work has been featured on the bet365 blog, and Max Force Racing. She spends her time between Michigan and California, staying up-to-date on the latest industry developments