New York Selects Nine Mobile Sportsbook Operators
The long wait is almost over as the state of New York continues to prepare for the launch of online sports betting. In a major move forward, the state’s gaming commission released a list of nine sportsbook operators on Nov. 8.
If everything continues to stay on track, New York could go live with online sports betting in time for the NFL’s Super Bowl in early February.
New York has offered legal sports betting for the past few years. However, it was limited to retail sportsbooks located in upstate casinos. The push to allow online sports betting through mobile operators started earlier this year.
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Once former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo threw his support behind mobile betting, several key lawmakers were able to move the proper legislation through the state House and Senate back in April. However in recent months, the regulatory process got bogged down over the licensing process.
Leading the list of approved operators are FanDuel and DraftKings as the two biggest US-based sportsbooks in terms of market share.
BetMGM is also on the list with its parent company MGM Resorts established in the state as the owner of Empire City Casino in Yonkers. Resorts World is also on the list as the owner of Resorts World Catskills in Sullivan County.
Other US-based sportsbook operators approved in New York include Caesars Sportsbook, Wynn Interactive, PointsBet, Bally Bet and Rush Street Interactive.
BetMGM Adam Greenblatt expressed the following thoughts in a released statement:
“New York has the potential to be one of the largest sports betting markets in the US., and BetMGM is particularly well positioned to become a leader in the state given the strength of the M life customer database, close proximity of Empire City Casino to support our omni-channel strategy and parlaying our already leading positions in nearby states.”
Early estimates on the impact of mobile sports betting in New York pointed to potential tax revenue of $500 million on an annual basis. This figure is based on a hefty 51% tax rate on mobile sports betting operator revenue.
This high tax rate was one of the major drawbacks for US-based operators. However, the biggest players in the game still believe that they can eventually turn a profit given the overall market potential.
Neighboring New Jersey is the biggest legal market in the US based on monthly handle. Pennsylvania to the south is the third-biggest sports betting state in the country.
New Jersey posted a record $1.01 billion betting handle in the month of September. Close to 20% of that betting volume can be attributed to New York sports bettors crossing the border according to some industry analysts. An appreciable chunk of Pennsylvania’s volume also comes from New York players.
Every mobile sportsbook operator in New York will be tied one of four land-based casinos in the upstate region of the state. Along with Resorts World Catskills, the other three are del Lago in the Finger Lakes, Rivers Casino in Schenectady and Tioga Downs in the Southern Tier.
The next step in the process to go live is setting up the various mobile servers. With the list of operators now set, it is realistic to see a launch ahead of the Super Bowl since everything from this point on is tied to logistics.
As CEO of Caesars Entertainment, Tom Reeg is bullish on the possibilities. His comments on the state’s decision included:
“We’ve been looking forward to the opportunity to bring mobile sports betting to New York. With more than 19 million people, New York will be the biggest mobile sports betting market in the country.”
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