Weekly Roundup 4/01/2022
It's been an exciting week in the world of sports betting, and as always we here at VegasInsider aim to keep you up-to-date on industry news and legislation-- no fooling around. Let's get into the what's-what and who's-who this week:
Ontario to Go Live with Commercial Licenses on Monday
Ontario is poised to go live with commercial sports betting licenses on Monday, April 4th, 2022. Previously, before the passage of C-218 in August 2021, users looking for legal bets in Canada would be restricted to parlays-- multiple bets on more than one moneyline that all have to win in order for the bet to pay out.
Now that single-event wagers are legal in Canada, provincial lottery authorities across the country are outfitting their sportsbooks to have the capacity for single bets, like say a single moneyline bet on the Maple Leafs to beat the Winnipeg Jets. PROLINE+ is one such sportsbook run by Ontario's provincial lottery, the OLG; but things are about to rapidly change.
The AGCO, Ontario's Alcohol and Gaming Commission, opted last year to issue online sports betting licenses (including single-event wagers) to any interested party whom could meet license requirements. On April 4, 2022, the following approved applicants will start offering expanded betting in Ontario:
- Royal Panda
More applicants are sure to flood in, as Ontario has no cap on available licenses as long as applicants can meet requirements. One caveat to Ontario's commercial program that will complicate matters is that promotion of bonus offers is restricted: even if there is an available offer, users will only be able to access details once they've opted to visit a given sports betting site, and such deals cannot be advertised on other media.
DraftKings and FanDuel Pull DFS from Ontario Market
In tandem with the outset of commercial online betting licenses in Ontario, two DFS giants are going to pull out of the market. FanDuel and DraftKings were offering paid and free daily fantasy contests in Ontario, but provisions to the commercial betting laws that will go live in April 2022 are going to massively impact the companies' ability to profit from DFS in the province.
Included in those caveats are a 20% revenue share and a $100,000 license fee, which would not be so steep for the DFS companies if players could play against other Canadian DFS users. Unfortunately for DraftKings and FanDuel, Ontario's new commercial iGaming rules would bar players from Ontario playing DFS contests against, say, a user in Quebec.
Canadian Gaming Association President and CEO Paul Burns said this in an interview with Covers:
"There are legal issues unresolved around having international liquidity in Ontario which we [hope] are resolved in the coming months (...) This is the most significant barrier to offering DFS."Paul Burns, CGA President and CEO
Bills, Bills, Bills
We're not talking about the Destiny's Child jam from 1999, either. The basic outline for sports betting to become legal in a given state tends to go thusly:
- A legislator drafts a bill proposal.
- Their colleagues in a given legislative arm discuss the bill.
- The bill goes to subcommittee. If it passes, the bill
- gets a final vote from that arm of the legislature (representatives, senators).
- If the bill passes its chamber of origin, it goes for a vote in the opposing chamber and, if it's lucky,
- makes it to the desk of the state's governor to be signed into law.
There are two bills currently up for debate in their respective states, so let's get into the nitty-gritty:
Missouri's HB 2502
HB 2502 is Missouri's latest attempt to legalize online sports betting in the Show-Me State, and major sportsbook operators in addition to a number of MO-based professional athletic teams are throwing their weight behind the bill.
Another bill proposed by Senator Denny Hoskins would set a tax rate at 21% compared to 2502's 8% rate on gross receipts, but it's unclear yet which tax rate will be set in stone if a sports betting bill is able to pass in MO. Hoskins has been a primary champion of legal sports betting in Missouri for quite some time, and continues to push for his version of the bill.
Any way you look at it, there's a significant desire for MO to legalize and tax sports betting both online and in-person, as neighboring states are continuing to put betting legislation on the books.
Minnesota's HF 778
HF 778 is one of several attempts to legalize online sports betting in Minnesota. However, not without difficulty: numerous groups are pushing back on the legislation, including advocacy groups Stop Predatory Gambling and Neighborhood Youth Academy. Still, the bill has had enough recent momentum to make it to a House subcommittee:
HF 778 would give federally-recognized tribes in the area the ability to offer legal betting online and in-person, obviously garnering support from MIGA, the Minnesota Indian Gaming Association. But opponents still claim that the legalization of online betting would entice underage bettors, prompting the bill's sponsor, Representative Zack Stephenson, to amend the bill to insist on a minimum age of 21 years old for users to legally bet.
Written by Chris Altman, our US Sports Betting Industry Expert.
The featured image for this post was sourced on Unsplash by Markus Spiske.
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