#8 Weekly Digest – Latest News in US Gambling World
The scenario of US casino and sports betting transforms rapidly. And it seems like this pandemic has paved the way for the growth of online casinos and sportsbooks. In this week’s digest, we explore what developments are happening in the online gambling domain of the USA.
DraftKings and Foxwood Enters In A Long-Term Partnership Ahead Of Anticipated Sports Betting Legalization In Connecticut
DraftKings and Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation have collaborated for a multi-channel deal to offer online sports betting in Connecticut. This deal comes ahead of the anticipated legalization of sports betting in the state. According to a reputed lawmaker, the state may legalize sports betting completely by next year. By legalizing online betting, Connecticut hopes to generate revenue and revive the economy of the state, which has hit hard due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
The chairman of Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation, which owns Foxwood, Rodney Butler, said that DraftKings is one of the leading names in the sports betting landscape. And by partnering with the organization reinforces the stand of Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation in the gaming and entertainment industry. Over the years, the team has proven its potential to bring innovative changes to the gaming world in the state. Through the Tribal gaming compact, the state will be able to bolster its economy with virtual entertainment and revenue.
Moreover, DraftKings is also gearing up to become the first-ever daily fantasy sports partner of Foxwood, a site that was launched on December 13th, 2020. DraftKings will offer contests, promotions, and a wide range of other digital experiences to improve the fan engagement
Jason Guyot, the interim CEO and president for Foxwood Resort Casino, said that DraftKings holds proponents in the sports entertainment and gaming market in the USA. By providing daily fantasy sports the company allows Foxwood to bring attractive and engaging online experiences to sports fans. By leveraging the expertise of both the company, the team will be in a strong position to advance in the region and beyond.
In this long term agreement with Connecticut, offering an exchange of 25% of the revenue generated by slots, the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation holds the exclusive right to administer the gaming within the borders of Connecticut. Since its inception, this deal has generated more than $8 billion in revenue.
The US Approaches The Second Wave of Pandemic – Casinos Are Closing Again
Earlier in March 2020, all gaming establishments in the US were shut down virtually within a week. This move was made to curb the spread of the Coronavirus pandemic. This closure has a massive impact on the economy, especially in states that have not legalized online sports betting. Heated debate fired upon prioritization of the public health and the financial condition of the businesses. With Tribal gaming companies leading the way, a handful of casinos began to open by the end of April. As per the sovereignty, they were not forced to wait for authorization from the states. Soon after, commercial casinos also began to follow suit.
As the winter approaches, the country has been hit by the second wave of the virus. Every state of the USA is a COVID-19 hotspot. Although vaccines are showing promise, it will take months before they are approved and distributed nationwide.
All the casinos in Pennsylvania were closed over the weekend. Governor Tom Wolf, on December 11th, 2020, ordered for the close, and it went effective two days later. Although River Philadelphia was closed from November 20th, 2020, and out of other casinos were open. The closure will continue until January 4th, 2021.
Moreover, Illinois, on December 11th, 2020, expanded its Tier-3 Mitigation orders for 30 more days. It implies that ten casinos in the state will remain closed till mid-January. Rhode Island has also ordered for the closure until December 31st, 2020.
Maryland casinos are open, but they are operating on 25% capacity until January. Nevada casinos are also operating at a similar capacity from November 24th, 2020, until January 15th, 2021.
While a couple of doses of the vaccines have been administered in the country, it will take time before enough people have taken it to develop herd immunity.
Three Sports Betting Bill Up For Discussion in Missouri for 2021 Session
State Sens. Caleb Rowden, Tony Luetkemeyer, and Denny Hoskins have filed bills to legalize sports betting featuring different tax rates and application fees. There are three 2021 bills for the legalization of VLTs. Presently, the state offers riverboat casinos, online gambling, bingo gaming. According to the Missouri Gaming Association, the taxes and fees received from gaming is the fifth-largest revenue source for the state. The American Gaming Association reported that 13 riverboat casinos in Missouri have contributed to over $550 million in respect to gaming revenue in 2018.
After bills failed to move through 2019, Luetkemeyer and Hoskins filed for the legalization of sports betting in the 2020 session. Both their bills were made through the committee hearing prior to the spike of COVID-19 cases. Due to the pandemic legislature was forced to adjourn early. Hoskin, during the session, argues that the state could earn between $12.5 and $30.9 million as revenue annually if it legalized sports betting. He now added that in today’s time, this estimated revenue could stand anywhere between $37 million and $50 million. Hoskins added that he expects that the government will morph the bills into one which needs to be approved in order to gain the revenue generated by states where sports betting is legalized.
The pandemic has hit the very industry, which includes the gambling sector in the USA. This is where the prominence of online casinos and betting came into play. States have been legalizing online gambling and sports betting to compensate for the lost revenue from the retail casinos and sportsbooks. Moreover, many technology companies are also shifting their focus on advancing the gambling sector of the country. There have been many innovative additions and legalization, and it is expected that in the coming years, more states will be treading towards legalization.