Kick-Off for Mobile Sports Betting in Massachusetts
Following months of careful preparation, mobile sports betting has gone live in the state of Massachusetts. State governor Charlie Baker signed House Bill 5164 to approve this.
After much anticipation from fans, this was greeted with enthusiasm and, as a result, saw six online operators be granted licenses by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) in time for launch.
The state has seen quite some change in the last few months within the industry, with retail betting launched in January, which has since had a positive reception. As such, any land-based casino or racetrack operator could apply for a license to offer sports betting to visitors.
Significant Interest Registered for Licenses
There was a considerable response from operators following the passing of the mobile sports betting bill, with the MGC receiving no less than 15 applications for licenses.
Ultimately, six brands have initially been granted permission to operate in the state, with it being reported that this could be the strictest application process in the country, as yet.
A state that is home to some of the biggest sports franchises in the country, including the Boston Red Sox MLB side and Boston Bruins NHL team, there has, for a long time, been substantial sports betting interest in the state.
For those operators that already have a major land-based casino presence, the availability of online sports betting provides them with a natural customer base. As is the case with BetMGM.
The debut of sports betting in Massachusetts has delivered an incredible amount of excitement and activity to our retail Sportsbook at MGM Springfield. We’re proud to expand our best-in-class wagering experience statewide during one of the sports’ biggest months of action.
Meanwhile, the president of digital for Caesars shared similar sentiments: “With the sports calendar gaining momentum and multiple Massachusetts teams having remarkable seasons, it’s a great time to bring a new entertainment experience to sports fans in the Commonwealth,” he revealed.
Massachusetts to Challenge in the Arena?
Although the states of New York and New Jersey are by far the largest in the industry from a revenue and betting handle perspective, it appears that Massachusetts, despite its modest size, could mount a challenge in terms of numbers.
Having already demonstrated a particular proclivity for the industry, the state also has the fourth highest median household income in the country, and as a result, more people have larger quantities of disposable funds.
Of course, there is a similar trend in New York, which does go some way to helping to explain the impressive figures in the ‘Big Apple’ over the last 12 months.
In Massachusetts, the next few months will be crucial for operators, who will want to make sure that they can make the most of the rest of the baseball season, with the Red Sox sure to attract a substantial amount of betting interest.
It will certainly be interesting to see the figures for the first month of Massachusetts and how these stack up with other states for their debut months.