Browse articles by topic

Illinois approves Hard Rock Casino sportsbook


The Illinois Gaming Board (IGB) has approved the launch of a new sportsbook at the Hard Rock Casino in Rockford.

The authority granted 815 Entertainment – doing business as Hard Rock Casino Rockford – a sports wagering operator license. Seminole Hard Rock Digital was also approved as a sports wagering management service provider.

The casino “must comply with IGB rules” before offering in-person and online wagering,” the regulator said. It is understood that the casino is hoping to begin offering sports betting within the next two months.

The Hard Rock Digital arm already operates online sportsbooks in several other US states. Last year, the division launched products in Indiana and Tennessee. It already served players online in New Jersey and Iowa.

Online-only license

Hard Rock’s sportsbook license was one of several regulatory matters discussed during the IGB’s meeting.

Digital Gaming Corporation (DGC) was also confirmed as the sole remaining applicant for a new online-only state sports wagering license. DGC IL LLC initially applied for a license last year, only to withdraw its bid.

However, the sports betting and igaming business is reapplying after it was acquired by Guernsey-based Super Group, Betway’s holding company.

DGC will need to pay a $20m licensing fee and undergo further checks before final approval is granted.

The other applicant for an online-only Illinois betting license by the March 1 deadline – Bet J&J – withdrew earlier this month. The state had opened up the application process for a total of three online-only licenses.


Additionally, the IGB granted more than 230 new gaming licenses and related approvals at its meeting. These included licenses for 109 video gaming locations.

IGB administrator Marcus Fruchter said the authority would continue focusing on regulating “in an ethical, transparent, compliant, and efficient manner.”