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State of the Union: CA, FL, NJ, PA and more

Insight | Analysis

This week’s State of the Union, in partnership with Segev LLP, covers new regulatory proposals put forward in California and Florida, as well as the latest revenue figures from New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Indiana and Mississippi.

Californian tribes make sports betting regulatory pitch
A coalition of 18 California-based Native American tribes have put forward a proposal that could pave the way for the launch of legal wagering in the state.

The proposal, the California Sports Wagering Regulation and Unlawful Gambling Enforcement Act, takes the form of a ballot measure, which if adopted would be put to voters at the November 2020 elections. 

It aims to amend the state constitution to legalize sports betting at limited locations, including Indian gaming casinos and licensed racetracks, and set a 10% gross revenue tax on licensees. 

“Californians should have the choice to participate in sports wagering at highly regulated, safe, and experienced gaming locations,” said Tribal Chairman Mark Macarro of the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians. 

Florida Senator submits sports betting legislation
Florida Senator Jeff Brandes submitted three bills in the state senate to regulate sports betting in Florida on Monday (18 November).

The bills, SB 968, SB 970 and SB 972 would allow for sports betting organised both by the state lottery and by private licensees. Wagering would be offered both at retail locations and online, should the bills pass into law.

The first bill, SB 968, sets the general framework  for sports betting in the state. Under the bill, the Department of the Lottery would  be granted power to develop regulations governing sports betting, including setting a maximum stake for sports bets.

NJ continues to break sports betting records in October
Licensed sports betting operators in New Jersey generated $46.4m in collective revenue for October, representing yet another new record total for the state, with market handle also hitting a new high of $487.9m.

Revenue surpassed the previous record of $37.9m, which was set in September. The October figure also represented a year-on-year rise of 297.8% on the $11.7m posted in the same month last year.

New Jersey’s sports wagering handle in October comfortably surpassed the existing record of $445.6m, which was also set in September. Handle was up 87.14% year-on-year from $260.7m in October of 2018.

PA online wagering handle hits $241.2m in October
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) has reported a 0.4% month-on-month increase in sports betting revenue to $14.9m for October, while igaming revenue was also up 19.5% to $4.9m for the month.

Overall sports betting revenue was up slightly from $14.88m in September, while players spent 24% more ($241.2m) during October than in the previous month ($194.5m).

Online was the primary source of sports betting revenue for licensed operators in the state by some margin, with online revenue for the month amounting to $10.3m, up 11.2% from September.

Indiana sports betting handle soars in October
The Indiana Gaming Commission has revealed that players in the state staked $91.7m on sports in October, a month-on-month increase of 160.4%.

The second full month of legal wagering included the first contributions from mobile wagering, which accounted for $48.0m (52.4%) of total handle despite just three sportsbooks launching offerings in the month. 

Mississippi betting market hits new heights in October
Mississippi’s sports betting market has enjoyed its strongest month since launch by far, with revenue hitting $12.3m in October. 

Handle for the month climbed to $48.0m, with the state benefitting from a remarkably high hold of 25.60%, compared to a win percentage of 3.59% in October of the prior year according to figures from the Mississippi Gaming Commission.

William Hill to acquire CG Technology sportsbook assets
William Hill has agreed a deal to acquire all race and sportsbook assets of bookmaker CG Technology for an undisclosed sum, allowing it to expand its presence in Nevada and gain a foothold in the Bahamas.

The agreement covers the leases at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, The Venetian and The Palazzo, The Palms, the Tropicana and Silverton, as well as providing a betting platform and risk management consulting to the Atlantis on Paradise Island, The Bahamas.

Spectrum Gaming Group wins NY gambling study tender
Independent gambling regulation consultancy Spectrum Gaming Group have won the tender process to conduct a long-awaited study into the expansion of the state’s gaming market.

A New York Gaming Commission representative confirmed to iGBNorthAmerica Monday (18 November) that Spectrum had won the tender process and that it will begin work on the study on 1 December, pending approval by the state comptroller.

Eldorado and Caesars shareholders approve $17.3bn merger deal
Shareholders in Eldorado Resorts and Caesars Entertainment Corporation have voted to approve the proposed merger of the two operators.

In June, it was revealed that Eldorado will acquire all of the outstanding shares in Caesars for a total consideration of around $17.3bn.

Kindred goes online with Unibet in Pennsylvania
Kindred Group has followed the land-based launch of its Unibet brand in Pennsylvania by rolling out online and mobile sports betting and casino gaming in the state, through a partnership with Mohegan Sun Pocono.

The Unibet land-based sportsbook, which went live in Pennsylvania at the end of September, will now be complemented by both online sports and casino services.

Presidential candidate Yang pledges loot box and crypto regulation
Democratic Presidential hopeful Andrew Yang has pledged to introduce regulations to tackle fraud in the cryptocurrency market, as well as regulations governing loot boxes and free-to-play games if he is elected.

In a wide-ranging series of proposals for regulating technology businesses, Yang said the government must be forward-thinking and informed on the latest technological developments, to ensure regulations can keep pace with innovation.