Welcome to our weekly industry news digest here at Captain Gambling, where we’ll give you the latest updates and information regarding betting legislation in all states across the country.
This week’s top stories:
- Michigan & Virginia set for set for mobile wagering launches in January 2021
- Betfred USA launches first online sportsbook in Pennsylvania
- Tennessee posts $131.4m sports betting handle for first month
Earlier in December, 15 licenses were issued to mobile sports betting operators by the Michigan Gaming Control Board, with some of the big names included being BetMGM, William Hill Draft Kings and FanDuel. Although no official launch date has been announced yet, a handful of the 15 operators have already begun offering welcome bonuses in preparation. As part of the new rules for sports betting in Michigan, operators must be tethered to brick and mortar casinos. As well as having casinos in Detroit, there are also tribal casinos throughout the state that some operators have linked up with.
Virginia’s lottery chief, Kevin Hall, has this week said that he’s now optimistic about sports betting go-live dates to be given in late January, having initially put forward early February is the likely launch date. The main goal is to have mobile wagering launched in enough time to take bets for the Super Bowl on 7 February. Virginia has been an unlikely state to fast track the launch of mobile wagering. Sports betting was only legalized in Old Dominion in April this year and the state currently has no existing casinos nor gambling commission.
Betfred USA has launched its first mobile sportsbook in Pennsylvania, in partnership with Wind Creek Casino. Betfred, which is one of the biggest online sportsbooks in the UK, is also licensed in the states of Colorado and Iowa, with Nevada soon to be added. The announcement has come sooner than expected. As CaptainGambling reported last month, the retail sportsbook at Wind Creek Bethlehem only opened in Mod November, occupying the space previously filled by Buddy V’s Ristorante. The partnership with Betfred USA now means that Pennsylvania can now place sports wagers online using Wind Creek Casino’s online platforms.
Tennessee has reported the figures for its first month of legal sports betting operations, thanks to the Tennessee Education Lottery. The Volunteer State notched up an inaugural sports betting handle of over $131.4 million for the month of November. The figure is now the largest first month handle that’s been produced by any state since mobile wagering was legalized at federal level in 2018. There should, however, potentially be an asterix applied to te figure. Unlike other states, Tennessee had no previous retail casinos or betting shops and therefor launched strictly as an online operator only. Additionally, while other states staggered the launch times fr each operator, Tennessee allowed all 4 operators in the state to launch at the same time on 1 November.