Illinois has been a roller coaster since the launch of sports betting in March. They started operations a week before the coronavirus pandemic shut everything down. Then, Gov. J.B. Pritzker decided to sign an executive order to allow people to register for mobile betting accounts online.
Online registration was live until late-July when Pritzker decided to reverse his order, forcing bettors to go to a sportsbook and sign-up in-person. However, there was a ton of backlash on the decision, and the reversal did not last long as the Illinois Gov. then went back to mobile registration.
The executive order was only signed through September 19. It was not until the day of where Pritzker decided to extend the executive order for Illinois bettors.
A Boost for Sportsbooks
Pritzker extending the executive order for mobile registration, only helps sportsbooks even more. In-person registration is still available, but the convenience of signing-up from your home is so much better.
Sportsbooks like DraftKings and FanDuel benefit the most from the executive order extension, as of writing this. DraftKings is located in Alton, which is four and a half hours south of Chicago. FanDuel is not much better located in Peoria, which is about two hours southwest of the city.
Mobile registration is huge for two of the largest sportsbooks in the U.S. as their locations are not convenient to bring in customers. Other sportsbooks like BetRivers, PointsBet, and William Hill are all in the Chicagoland area, so they have a bigger advantage.
The Land of Lincoln has seen close to 250K people sign-up for sports betting accounts online. The mass registration also comes in two months when Pritzker put in the executive order and major sports starting back up in the U.S.
How this Helps Illinois
Illinois sports betting started rocky as politics in the state kept putting up unnecessary hurdles. Initially, mobile betting operators had to wait for 18-months before they entered. The “penalty box” period affected books like DraftKings and FanDuel, as the state wanted them to pay for illegally operating daily fantasy sports a few years earlier.
Both sportsbooks found loopholes into the Illinois betting market, which was where Pritzker decided to pull his executive order to no allow online registration.
However, that move caused a major backlash in the sports betting industry, where he reversed his order a few weeks later. Now, the extension of online registration continues, which will only help out Illinois sports betting.
This week, the state reported their July betting numbers, where they hit $62 million for the month. Not bad, given the circumstances.
Illinois should only see those numbers continue to jump for August and beyond. Online registration is only helping the state, and they should realize it with the amount of money coming in from online betting.
The convenience is nice, especially on a Saturday or Sunday, when you are out with friends who have sports betting accounts. If in-person registration were the only thing possible, then fewer people would sign-up. Now, you could download a sports betting app and bet within minutes.
Illinois should be on the rise from here on out.