Massachusetts in receipt of 15 sports betting applications

Encore Boston Harbor, Massachusetts

A total of 15 sports wagering operator applications have been received by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission ahead of a deadline earlier in the week.

Three applications were received for category one licences, five were received for a category three certification that is tethered to the aforementioned, and six were for stand-alone permissions. 

One additional category three licence application to be tethered to a category two licence was also received. Category two licences, which only current horse tracks or simulcast facilities are eligible for, will be accepted on a rolling basis.

Encore Boston Harbor, MGM Springfield, and Plainridge Park Casino have each submitted applications for a category one permission, which would permit in-person sports wagering at each property as well as on up to two online platforms. The online platforms attached to these will be licensed as category three operations.

The former has signalled an intention to operate WynnBet and Caesars sportsbook online platforms, with MGM Springfield only intending to utilise BetMGM. Plainridge Park Casino is to operate digitally via Penn Sports Interactive and Fanatics.

These entities are required to be licensed as a category three operator and have submitted the relevant application, with the licences subject to MGC approval.

Six applications were submitted for category three operator licences, excluding those listed above, which were submitted by BallyBet, Betr, Betway, DraftKings, FanDuel and Pointsbet. Each application was accompanied by a $200,000 fee.

State law permitted the award of seven stand-alone licences, which allow operators to offer sports wagering across Massachusetts through an online platform. Those tethered to a category one licence are excluded from this total.

It is hoped that in-person sportsbooks will be available from January, with the digital doors anticipated to swing open two months later.

Elsewhere, Raynham-Taunton Greyhound Park, which is to partner with bet365, and Suffolk Downs are the only entities eligible to apply for a category two licence at this time, with each indicating that they intend to apply but will not be ready for a launch at the turn of 2023. These applications can be submitted on a rolling basis.