Sometimes promotions result in a massive profit for a company—but other times they backfire.
The latter is what happened for sportsbooks in Indiana on Sunday night. With legalized sports betting just launching in the state, books offered special prices on the Colts moneyline, as Indianapolis played against the Chiefs on Sunday Night Football.
DraftKings launched its mobile product in Indiana on Thursday and offered the Colts at 10/1 money-line odds. Indianapolis was +460 on the market, but the promotion was intended to bring in extra money as sports betting gains a footing in the state.
According to the Action Network’s Darren Rovell, DraftKings lost $300,000 on the promotion, even though the limit for the bet was $10. Out of the Indiana clients, 38 percent took advantage of the odds boost.
It wasn’t all fun and games for bettors, however. The Colts’ upset—which was the biggest of the young NFL season—killed many money-line parlays across the United States.
A sports bettor in New Jersey needed the Chiefs to win outright, which would have completed a two-team parlay worth almost $150,000. The first leg of the parlay was the Baltimore Ravens, who beat the Pittsburgh Steelers in overtime.
Another bettor placed a $285,000 money-line parlay on the Chiefs and Chicago Bears in New Jersey, which would have netted nearly $200,000.
Neither leg cashed, as the Bears took a 24-21 loss to the Oakland Raiders.
Even though DraftKings lost $300,000 on the Colts, the book earned customers for at least another week. In many ways, the odds boost on Indianapolis is no different than a deposit bonus or other promotion.