Seminole Tribe enters sports betting deals with five Florida pari-mutuels

Hard Rock Hollywood Seminole

The Seminole Tribe of Florida has entered sports wagering agreements with five pari-mutuels within the state, as preparation for a state-wide launch continues to gather pace.

This follows the introduction of a controversial gambling compact within the state, which was signed by Governor Ron DeSantis and Marcellus Osceola, Seminole Tribe of Florida chair, in April.

Approval with bipartisan support by the Florida Legislature followed in May, before it was issued the green-light by the US Department of the Interior in August.

The agreements inked by the Seminole Tribe are alongside Palm Beach Kennel Club, West Palm Beach; Hialeah Park Casino, Hialeah; Ocala Gainesville Poker and Ocala Breeder’s Sales Company, Ocala; Tampa Bay Downs, and TGT Poker & Racebook.

The pari-mutuels will market the sportsbook at their facilities and to their customers, and in return earn 60 per cent of the profits that are generated from their marketing efforts. Additional marketing agreements with Florida pari-mutuels are expected to be announced soon.

“Today’s announcement follows through on the tribe’s commitment to include pari-mutuel marketing partners in Florida sports betting. They are an important component for the coming launch of sports betting throughout the state of Florida,” said Jim Allen, CEO of Seminole Gaming and chair of Hard Rock International, which is owned by the Seminole Tribe. 

“We have already exceeded the compact’s requirement for a minimum of three pari-mutuel agreements and we look forward to developing more relationships with pari-mutuels around Florida.”

The compact creates a revenue-sharing agreement with a $2.5bn guarantee in the first five years, as well as authorising craps and roulette games at Seminole properties, additional facilities on the tribe’s Hollywood Reservation, sports betting at tribal casinos, and statewide online sports betting in partnership with existing pari-mutuels.

The state received its first monthly revenue sharing contribution from the Seminole Tribe in October, when a $37m payment was transmitted.

“As was promised when it was signed, this historic compact is expanding economic opportunity, tourism, and recreation in Florida,” said DeSantis.

“Not only will this compact bring a guaranteed $2.5bn in revenue over the next five years, but it also brings together Florida pari-mutuel businesses from across the state in a creative partnership with the Seminole Tribe providing increased access to safe and transparent sports betting in Florida. 

“Today’s announcement is a great success for the state and the Seminole Tribe, and I look forward to the announcement of additional partnerships to come.”