Six Applicants Await Verdict
Most recently, PointsBet was found to have met the criteria for an untethered license, joining DraftKings, FanDuel, BallyBet, Betr, and Betway. The commission is set to begin voting on these operators on Jan. 18 at 2 p.m. and will likely continue the voting process through Jan. 20, MGC Chair Cathy Judd-Stein said.
Sports betting legislation in Massachusetts allows for up to seven untethered operators in the state, however, only six companies applied for such licenses. All six were given initial approval by the commission. They join Caesars, BetMGM, Barstool, BetFanatics, and WynnBet who all received tethered licenses in the state. With the exception of Betway, all of the approved operators plan to launch in March, when online sports betting launches in the state.
When he's got that look in his eyes, watch out 😤 pic.twitter.com/bSJICPdhgp
Though PointsBet recently got the initial nod, it was not without question. To start, the MGC raised questions over PointsBet’s partnerships with the University of Maryland and the University of Colorado.
The commission has asked other operators with similar collegiate partnerships not to pursue such relationships with Massachusetts universities – they asked the same of PointsBet and they complied with the request.
Commissioner Eileen O’Brien took notice of the company’s diversity, equity, and inclusion statistics that show 73% of the company is white, and 18.75% of females at the company are in leadership positions.
“We do have an ongoing partnership in Women’s in Sports Tech to actively recruit women to our workplace. We do recognize that we have room to grow in this space,” said Laura Leffler, Senior Director of Diversity, Culture and Employee Experience. “This is at the top of my radar to have a strong focus in this area to attract and retain women and diverse employees to our work place.”
Approval Is Expected
Despite the apprehensions, PointsBet and the other five untethered applicants are likely to get the final vote of approval from the commission. Preliminary approval, which all six applicants received, was the process by which the commission ensured that all applicants met the requirements of the legislation. The final vote is more about collecting more information about each candidate.
That being said, everything should become crystal clear in the next few days as the commission finalizes their decisions.
REMINDER: Trevor Lawrence has STILL never lost a football game on a Saturday pic.twitter.com/Ys58WSR9Fv
— PointsBet Sportsbook (@PointsBetUSA) January 18, 2023
Jan. 31 Coming Soon
The commission is set to hold a meeting on Jan. 20 to discuss and possibly approve house rules for its operators. If they do approve them, then on Jan. 25, the MGC could certify the casinos set to take in-person sports bets – Encore Boston, Plainridge Park, and MGM Springfield. This would mean the commission is on track for their predetermined launch date.
The MGC is targeting a soft launch for retail sports betting on Jan. 30 followed by the full retail launch on Jan. 31.