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  • New York rockets to top of US sports betting leaderboard for transaction volume on opening weekend
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Nearly six million (5.8m) sports betting transactions were registered within the first 12 hours of New York’s legal online sports betting launch as customers flocked to place mobile bets with newly licensed DraftKings, FanDuel, Caesars Entertainment and Rush Street Interactive. 

New York only launched legal online sports betting on Saturday 8 January, but the state outperformed its closest competitor Pennsylvania, where just 2.3m transactions were processed over the same period, according to the latest data from geolocation services provider GeoComply.

Over the whole weekend, transactions processed using GeoComply’s customer location solution totalled 17.2m, with 8m coming from the five boroughs of New York City. This placed the city alone ahead of any other single US state in terms of transaction volume.

The industry is watching closely to see whether the flurry of activity seen in the market’s first 48 hours post-launch is sustainable as customers begin to use up the promotional offers currently available from the state’s four live operators.

The aforementioned operators have gained a headstart on the rest of the market but will be anxious to see what happens when the next batch of licensees go live, at which point the early entrant advantage (or lack thereof) will start to become clearer.

The state’s controversial 51% tax rate continues to lend an uncertain future to its legalised sports betting market, with operators likely to register losses in the market’s early stages while customer acquisition is the order of the day.

That hasn’t stopped generous offers being made available, however, with Caesars offering to match customer deposits up to a maximum value of $3,000, in addition to offering up to $300 in further free bets.

“Today is a historic day for not only Caesars Sportsbook, but for the entire state of New York,” said Chris Holdren, co-president of Caesars Digital on Saturday. 

“We’re ready to treat sports fans across the state of New York like royalty through our Caesars Sportsbook app as we welcome them into the Caesars Empire, extend our already established roots and continue to build partnerships that benefit our bettors.”

It isn’t just operators that are bullish on the Empire State’s sports betting potential, with major international gaming affiliates also jumping into the fray. They will be crucial for sending customers to sportsbooks during the early stages of the market. 

Action Network owner Better Collective is well positioned to capitalise on the burgeoning market, having agreed partnerships with three out of four of the state’s live operators to date.

“Unlocking the fourth most populous state in the US to mobile sports betting is a huge moment for Better Collective and our growing portfolio of US assets,” said Marc Pedersen, CEO of Better Collective US. 

“We are strongly positioned and excited to continue delivering sports betting content to the many thousand sports enthusiasts from New York that visit our sites daily. ”

Gambling.com Group has also shown its enthusiasm for connecting directly with New York-based customers, with two new media portals; NewYorkBets.com and EmpireStakes.com. These sites will target the state exclusively in addition to its national Bookies.com and Gambling.com brands.

“It is difficult to overstate the significance of New York State going live with legal online sports betting,” said Gambling.com Group CEO Charles Gillespie. 

“As the largest state by population to accept legal sports bets in the US to date, there is a massive opportunity for the New York market to be not just the biggest jurisdiction for sports betting in the country, but in the world.

“With passionate sports fans and some of the most storied sports franchises, we expect that the New York market will likely quickly surpass its neighbour, New Jersey, in terms of sports betting handle and Gambling.com Group is prepared to take full advantage,” Gillespie concluded.

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