For the second straight month, revenue numbers for Ohio casinos declined in June.
But the Buckeye State still posted strong overall figures yet again, a total that ranks as the fifth-best month in state industry history.
The state’s four casinos brought in a total of $84.7 million last month, down 2.4% from May. At their peak in 2021, Ohio casinos raked in $92.5 million in April. While there has been a recent dip, year-over-year numbers are up compared with 2020 and 2019.
Here’s a deeper look into the Ohio casino industry in June.
Breaking down Ohio casino revenue in June
Despite the decline from previous months in 2021, revenue was up 20.5% from June 2019. And it is certainly a welcome total considering last year, when COVID-19 restrictions wreaked havoc on — and forced closures in — the casino industry.
Atop the individual casino leaderboard, Hollywood Casino Columbus reported $23.2 million in revenue. On the flip side, Hollywood Casino Toledo reported $19.2 million in revenue, reflecting a $2.2 million drop from May.
Take a look at the full numbers below:
|Casino||June 2021||May 2021|
|Hollywood Casino Columbus||$23,207,120||$23,084,630|
|JACK Cleveland Casino||$22,839,282||$22,468,652|
|Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati||$19,398,889||$19,729,708|
|Hollywood Casino Toledo||$19,270,030||$21,555,203|
Slot revenue continues to carry the load
The total revenue from slots was $59.2 million, 57.1% higher than the $25.4 million brought in from table games statewide.
So far in 2021, revenue from slots has been the bread and butter for casinos compared to table games. At its peak in March, casinos made nearly three times more revenue from slots.
Why is Ohio casino revenue decreasing?
Ohioans are returning to their usual activities with COVID-19 restrictions being lifted. Though in the summer months, it’s typical for people to seek more outdoor forms of entertainment.
When Gov. Mike DeWine lifted the state’s COVID-19 curfew law on Feb. 11, it was reasonable to expect big casino revenue numbers in March and April. That was certainly the case, as casinos posted $91.6 million and $92.5 million in revenue in those two months, respectively, because people were champing at the bit to return to normalcy.
Since then, casinos haven’t been able to reach the peak revenue they saw as spring arrived.
However, they still brought in $50.6 million more in June 2021 than they did in June 2020, a month heavily affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Despite a small month-over-month decline, casinos have still been reeling in major profits.
Ohio sports betting on the horizon
Erik Schippers, vice president of Penn National, brought hope to Ohio sports bettors when he voiced Penn’s support for a bill sent from the Senate to the House.
The Senate added sports betting language to HB 29, a bill previously passed by the House concerning unrelated topics. The Senate amended the bill to ensure the governor would review it before June 30 when the House broke for the summer.
The House unanimously voted to balk, which set the stage for a conference committee to further discuss the bill.
“Now this gives a chance for the House to understand all provisions in there and do some final cleanup,” Schippers said. “They may bring more substantive issues to the table but, from our perspective, we were supportive of HB 29 as it came out of the Senate.”
What sports betting means for Ohio casinos
Legal sports betting in Ohio would help casinos add another reliable revenue stream, as we’ve seen in other states.
Indiana sportsbooks have made $291.7 million in sports betting revenue since it was legalized in Sept. 2019. Pennsylvania operators have made $581.1 million from sports betting after legalization in Nov. 2018. Though online sports betting is king, retail wagering is still responsible for millions of dollars in bets each month in most markets.
Considering Ohio’s parallels in region and population to each state, there’s no reason the Buckeye State and its citizens can’t reap similar benefits.