GeoComply: Ohio Sports Betting Launch Weekend Passes New York

Written By Tyler Andrews on January 3, 2023 - Last Updated on January 4, 2023
Ohio Sports Betting Geolocation

Ohio’s long-awaited launch of sports betting produced more geolocated transactions than any other state in the nation, including New York. 

GeoComply identified more than 11 million unique transactions in Ohio

Data provided by GeoComply, the iGaming location compliance leader, identified 11.3 million unique geolocated transactions in Ohio over the New Year’s weekend (Jan. 1-Jan. 2). In this case, a geolocation transaction occurs when someone attempts to sign in to a sports betting app and also when they attempt to make a bet.

Though unofficial, these initial numbers suggest a huge opening for the market, though we won’t find out that official data from regulators until later.

GeoComply also noted the following data points along the way:

  • 16 online operators
  • 784,000 unique accounts
  • 234,000 unique transactions in the first hour of the launch

That total represents 2 million more unique transactions than what bettors in New York made during the same time frame. As PlayOhio has previously noted, Ohio’s market will quickly rise into the top five in the country due to its strong sports presence, numerous retail and online options, and overall population. 

Source: GeoComply

This opening weekend seems to indicate the sky’s the limit for sports betting in the Buckeye State.  

Cincinnati comes in tops in state for geotransactions

Despite having one-third as many people as Columbus, the state’s most populous city, Cincinnati recorded the most geolocations during the first 48 hours of legal sports betting — 1,898,000. That’s 800,000 more transactions than Columbus, and more than 1 million more than Cleveland and Toledo, the next two most trafficked cities in the state.

Source: GeoComply

A few factors come into play here:

  • Cincinnati is a border town and could have had an influx of visitors from other states, including Kentucky, which doesn’t have sports betting
  • Many Columbus residents were likely not home this weekend. Many traveled to Atlanta to watch the Peach Bowl, while several Ohio State students might be elsewhere during the holiday break.
  • Cincinnati had a big influx of visitors Monday night for the Bengals game against Buffalo. In addition, the high-profile sporting event there gave residents a reason to be quick about downloading their apps. Meanwhile, Ohio State’s game ended just before the midnight launch.

Ohio creates (even more) competition for Michigan

Even though both the Wolverines and Buckeyes went down in flames this weekend on the gridiron, the Ohio/Michigan rivalry can carry on uninterrupted now that both states can lock horns via gaming revenue and geo-transactions. 

Ohio, with its slightly larger population (about 2 million more people than Michigan) and excitement around the launch, handed the “L” to Michigan this weekend by nearly doubling its total amount of transactions.

Source: GeoComply

With Ohio’s robust retail market, including the launch of the novel kiosk system, and the growing slate of online operators, Ohio portends to be formidable competition for Michigan, Pennsylvania, and most other states in the area.

In fact, it should quickly surpass those markets.

Ohio market to grow in coming months

With only half the number of retail and online operator approvals confirmed in Ohio and at least 300 more kiosks set to open, Ohio’s sports betting market will continue to grow in 2023. The main benefactors of sports betting revenue in Ohio are the education industry, problem gambling, and military veterans.

“We are thrilled to welcome another state into the regulated online sports betting sector,” GeoComply SVP of Compliance Lindsay Slader said in a news release. “As expected, residents of the Buckeye State enthusiastically greeted the market at the moment the calendar changed over to 2023.”

If the launch is any indication, Ohio will be able to do some serious good along these fronts. 

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Tyler Andrews

Tyler contributes regularly to, covering sports, sports law, and gambling for the Buckeye State. However, he has covered similar topics for PlayCA, PlayFlorida, PlayOhio, and PlayMA. Tyler’s current focus is Ohio's sports betting launch.

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