Ohio Betting Kiosk Market Dips Sharply In June, Lottery Operating Program At A Loss

Written By Brian Cross on July 17, 2023 - Last Updated on July 18, 2023
Ohio Sports Betting Kiosk

The smallest segment of Ohio’s sports betting market is made up of the nearly 1,000 standalone betting kiosks located in bars, restaurants and other retail locations throughout the state. In June, the kiosks brought in the second-lowest betting volume of any month so far.

The terminals took in $954,804 in betting handle. That figure represents a decrease of 22.75% from the previous month for Ohio sports betting kiosks.

Revenue falls at Ohio sports betting kiosks, too

All sports betting in the U.S. shows a slowdown in the summer months, as the most popular betting sports are in their offseasons. However, adding to the sting for kiosk operators last month was the lower than usual revenue made on the machines.

Combined Gross Gaming Revenue made by the five kiosk proprietors in June was $38,811. That means the amount paid out to bettors was high. Taken as a whole, the kiosks paid out 95.91% in winnings to bettors.

The Ohio betting kiosk hold percentage of 4.09% is below the generally expected rate of 7-8%. Until June, the kiosks were averaging a hold percentage over 10%. Including June, the average hold percentage so far is still healthy, at 9.84%.

The Ohio Lottery Commission regulates the market and takes a cut of the proceeds. Needless to say, the Lottery’s earnings on the kiosks was the lowest figure yet, at $5,350.

Ohio sports betting kiosk handle 2023

  • January: $850,336
  • February: $973,208
  • March: $1,384,324
  • April: $1,127,133
  • May: $1,235,984
  • June: $954,804

Proprietor breakdown shows winners and losers

As with all forms of gambling, the house has the edge when you place sports bets. But the sportsbook doesn’t always come out ahead. In June, BetSkyBox came up with negative revenue after bettors won more than they wagered on the company’s 40 kiosk locations in Ohio. BetSkyBox ended the month $1,886 in the hole.

SportsBet didn’t do much better, considering the total amount wagered at their 733 locations. On more than $483,000 in bets, the company made $5,693. That’s a payout percentage of 98.81%. By contrast, UBet made over $20,000 in revenue on $177,344 in bets.

These figures just go to show that while sportsbooks can make a lot of money, monthly revenue can be inconsistent.

OperatorHandleRevenuePayout %
Gold Rush$132,397$7,76894.10%
Bet SkyBox$85,096-$1,886102.22%
Bet IGG$76,672$7,03590.82%

Ohio’s kiosk landscape is unique. No other legal sports betting state has allowed the standalone units to be deployed as widely as Ohio. In the Buckeye State, any business that can be licensed to offer Lottery games can apply for a sports betting kiosk license as well. That includes convenience stores and grocery stores, but also bars and restaurants that offer Keno, for example.

The Ohio Lottery is currently operating the kiosk program at a loss. Administrative costs for regulating the kiosks add up to $650,000 per year, or over $54,000 each month. The largest cut the Lottery has received was $33,283 in March.

There is room for the kiosk market in Ohio to grow, however. Breweries, wineries and distilleries that operate tap rooms will soon be able to host the kiosks. In addition, two large supermarket chains in the state are newly approved and working with kiosk proprietors on roll out plans. Kroger could add kiosks at up to 42 locations, and Giant Eagle has 64 locations approved.

Photo by AP / Keith Srakocic
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Brian Cross

Brian Cross contributes sports betting, casino and lottery coverage to PlayOhio and PlayPennsylvania. Brian studied Professional Writing and Journalism at the University of Cincinnati and has been a contributing writer at Cincinnati’s alt-weekly for over 10 years.

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