The video lottery terminal revenue numbers for April released Monday by the Ohio Lottery pointed downward compared to both the month and year before.
The 10,411 VLT machines in operation at the seven racinos combined for $118.1 million in April revenue. That was 5.7% less than the $125.2 million in March and 3.8% less than the $122.7 million in April 2022.
It is typical for gaming activity in April to decline from March, a longer month in which many gamblers are happy to come out of winter hibernation for in-person visits. The year-over-year decline is more surprising, given that the racetrack-casinos now have sports betting as an additional amenity to help attract patrons.
Figures from the Ohio Casino Control Commission show that in March, the last month for which it has released revenue data, the retail sportsbooks at racinos took $8.9 million in bets, which provided them $958,516 in revenue.
Northfield Park had strongest month
Only MGM Northfield Park — typically the largest revenue generator among racinos — had a strong month of April, with its $26.5 million from VLTs up slightly from March and 3.6% ahead of April 2022.
Miami Valley Gaming was responsible in March for most of the statewide gain in revenue from a year earlier, but it slacked off in April. Its $20.5 million in revenue was down 7.9% from the month before, though its 2% increase from April 2022 made it the only racino other than Northfield Park to show year-over-year improvement.
The VLTs at Eldorado Gaming Scioto Downs generated $19.8 million last month, down 7.5% from March and 11.9% from a year earlier.
JACK Thistledown reported revenue of $16.7 million, a 4.3% monthly decline and 3.2% year-over-year decline.
Hollywood Mahoning Valley made $13.9 million from its machines in April, down 6.9% from March and 4.4% from a year earlier.
Hollywood Gaming Dayton’s $13.2 million in revenue was off 10.3% monthly and 7.4% compared to the year before.
Lastly, Belterra Park reported $7.5 million from VLTs, down 6.8% monthly and 12.7% year over year.
Casino revenue was basically flat in March
The racino VLT numbers for April come on the heels of release by the Casino Control Commission last week of numbers that showed the four casinos made little improvement collectively in March upon their own performance from a year earlier. (The commission will not release April data until the end of this month.)
The casinos’ combined $93.5 million in March slots and table games revenue, while up 13.2% from February, was about the same as the $93.3 million in March 2022, before the casinos were able to add retail sportsbooks on Jan. 1.
In-person sports betting at the casinos provided $1.6 million in revenue from $11.4 million in bets placed at their sportsbooks in March. That is a small fraction of the statewide total of $737.2 million in handle and $95.2 million in revenue, as the vast preponderance of betting is done in digital form.
Hollywood Casino Toledo stood out as the one property with a year-over-year decline in slots and table play. Its $20.7 million in March gaming revenue, while up 11.3% from February, was down 7.7% from a year earlier.
With $24.4 million, JACK Cleveland came in about the same as in March 2022 and 7.3% more than in February.
Hard Rock Cincinnati showed the biggest improvement, with its $24 million in March being 21% better than the month before and 4.9% better than the year before.
Hollywood Casino Columbus was also solid, with $24.3 million in revenue, which was 13.8% higher than in February and 3.8% higher than in March 2022.
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