January 2, 2024 2 min read


Ohio’s Betting Industry Recorded $6B in Handle in 2023

Unfortunately, the legalization of sports betting in Ohio has also led to higher problem gambling rates in the state

Ohio’s flourishing sports betting industry saw punters wager a total of $6 billion within a year of the vertical’s legalization. The Buckeye State greenlit wagering on sports on January 1, 2023, allowing the seventh most populous state in the USA to join the community of states where wagering is legal.

For reference, a billion of all wagers were placed in January 2023 alone, testifying to the local players’ enthusiasm about betting. These wagers resulted in tax revenue of $200 million in the first month of betting.

Ohio allows operators to set up as many as 40 retail sportsbooks. However, since an overwhelming majority of the total bets (98%) were placed online, there are still not many brick-and-mortar sports betting venues in the state. Speaking of online wagering, Ohio allows up to 25 online sports betting operators to run up to two online sportsbooks.

Problem Gaming Was on the Rise

Unfortunately, the legalization of sports betting in Ohio has also led to higher problem gambling rates in the state. While some Buckeyes have been wagering on sports even before the vertical’s official legalizations, the official launch has caused a spike in the calls received by the Problem Gambling Network of Ohio.

The organization reported that it has received approximately 1,500 calls from local players in January 2023 alone. For reference, this figure is three times higher than the one recorded in January 2022. Fortunately, the number of calls dwindled in the following months although it remained firmly higher than the 2022 figures.

According to the Ohio Casino Control Commission’s executive director, Matthew Schuler, sports betting can be more addictive than other types of gambling. This may be attributable to the diverse sports betting offerings in the state that allow players to place fast-paced wagers on a variety of incidents.

Luckily, struggling players can exclude themselves from gambling or limit their exposure to the gambling industry through a variety of schemes and tools.

In the meantime, proponents of Ohio’s gambling industry are now eyeing the prospects of launching legal iGaming in the state. Gambling powerhouse BetMGM, for example, is optimistic that a few states, including New York, Maryland and Illinois might legalize iGaming next. According to the company, New York can potentially serve as a catalyst for the proliferation of online casino gaming and prompt Buckeye lawmakers to consider legalizing iGaming.


Although Fiona doesn't have a long-spanning background within the gambling industry, she is an incredibly skilled journalist who has built a strong interest in the constantly growing iGaming network. The team at GamblingNews.com is glad to have her on our roster to help deliver the best stories as soon as they hit. Aside from writing, she loves to dabble in online casino games such as slots and roulette, both for her own enjoyment and also as research to better improve her understanding of the industry.

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