The Michigan Gaming Control Board has approved 888’s application to become the new platform provider for the Hannahville Indian Community’s online sports betting site, effective immediately.
The tribe has had to seek a fresh agreement after Churchill Downs made the decision to exit the US’ online sports betting and casino scene and transition the digital strategy of TwinSpires, its original platform provider, to that of horse racing.
At this time, the tribe and 888 Holdings have requested the MGCB to authorise internet sports betting only, with the digital entity to operate under the Sports Illustrated brand. It is expected that igaming approval will be sought before the close of 2022.
The Hannahville Indian Community, which operates Island Resort and Casino, was among 10 licensees initially authorised by the Michigan regulator to launch both forms of online gaming in Michigan on January 22, 2001. In mid-April, the MGCB permitted the state’s 15th internet gaming and sports betting operator.
“The Hannahville tribe is the first operator in Michigan to change platform providers since internet gaming and sports betting began here in January 2021,” said Henry Williams, MGCB executive director. “The tribe has found another experienced partner, and I wish them continued success.”
Earlier this month, the MGCB urged the inclusion of responsible gaming awareness to high school and college students from this month, which came as a new school year began.
The regulator cited National Council on Problem Gambling statistics that suggested between 60 per cent and 80 per cent of high school students gambled for money in the past year.
“As fall sports begin, it’s a great time to remind everyone to have fun responsibly when wagering on sporting events throughout the season,” noted Williams.
“During September, the MGCB wants to raise awareness of responsible gaming particularly among young people and joins the American Gaming Association and its members as they introduce Responsible Gaming Education Month.
“The MGCB will use its social media channels throughout the month to help raise responsible gaming awareness in Michigan.”