Houston businessman Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale once again found himself part of the hype-building for Super Bowl LV.
As McIngvale has done for past major sporting events, he placed a bet on the outcome, a big one.
This time, McIngvale flew to Colorado to place a legal wager via DraftKings Sportsbook, laying down a whopping $3.46 million wager. By most reports, it was the largest single bet placed by anyone on this year’s big game.
How did Mattress Mack do? He was a big winner, having backed the Tampa Bay Buccaneers +3.5. Tampa Bay won the game handily, routing the favored Kansas City Chiefs by a score of 31-9.
Texas does not allow any forms of legal sports betting, which, in this case, saved them from having to cover Mack’s historic win.
Big Bucs bet yields $2.72M for McIngvale
The owner and operator of the Houston-based Gallery Furniture retail chain placed the bet at -127 odds, thereby earning himself a handsome $2.72 million profit.
The win came as an early birthday present for McIngvale, who turns 70 this week.
McIngvale’s huge bets have helped promote both himself and Gallery Furniture over the years.
Ever the entrepreneur, McIngvale first came to prominence in the Houston area for starring in television commercials in the 1980s. He became a star thanks in part to his catchphrase, “Gallery Furniture saves you money!” After opening his first store nearly four decades ago, the chain today is reportedly worth between $150 and $200 million.
Super Bowl win also a bonus for customers
In truth, McIngvale’s big sports bets have been directly connected to Gallery Furniture promotions. The promotion surrounding his Super Bowl bet this year was similar to ones he’s offered in the past.
Customers who spent $3,000 or more on furniture at McIngvale’s stores did so knowing they would receive their money back if Tampa Bay covered the 3.5-point spread against Kansas City, as McIngvale wagered.
In this way, the bet works as a kind of hedge for McIngvale. Winning the bet helps him cover his liability for the promotion. Meanwhile, if he loses, profits from boosted sales help him to recoup the money lost.
Super Bowl bet one of several big wagers by ‘Mattress Mack’
McIngvale has famously offered similar deals in the past when wagering large amounts on sporting events.
According to KTRK-TV in Houston, Mattress Mack’s big sports bets date back to the 2014 Super Bowl.
On two recent occasions, McIngvale has bet millions on the Houston Astros to win the World Series while also running the same promotion at his stores.
In 2017, McIngvale bet more than $1 million on the Astros to win while also taking out additional insurance premiums. Houston did just that, defeating the Los Angeles Dodgers in seven games. McIngvale told ESPN he paid out more than $10 million in refunds thanks to the promotion.
In 2019, he again bet big on the Astros to win it all. Houston lost the World Series that year in seven games to the Washington Nationals. By most accounts, McIngvale lost approximately $13 million in total wagers on Houston that year, although he claimed that if the Astros had won his liability would have totaled more than $15 million.
“I’m just a huckster, I’m a promoter, I wake up every day with a new idea,” McIngvale told CNN at the time.
The strategy has definitely earned McIngvale and his stores a lot of notice, with customers already looking forward to Mattress Mack’s next big bet.