Colorado prepares to launch sports betting market

Colorado’s sports wagering market is set to go live today despite the sports shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Legal sports wagering is set to go live in Colorado today (May 1) with a handful of operators making the final preparations to launch their online betting products.

On top of this, the Colorado Limited Gaming Control Commission (CLGCC) approved another wave of sports wagering license at yesterday’s meeting.

Operators launching today

By the end of the day, at least four of online sports betting brands are expected to go live in Colorado.

DraftKings, in partnership with Twin River’s Golden Mardi Gras Casino, will launch its online sports betting site and mobile app. FanDuel, which entered the state through an agreement with Golden Gates Casino (another Twin River-owned venue), is also expected to complete its online launch today.

The joint venture between MGM Resorts and GVC Holdings, Roar Digital, is also set to launch a betMGM-branded site today through a partnership with Triple Crown Casinos’ Midnight Rose Hotel and Casino.

Rush Street Interactive claims it will be the first to launch in the state with the launch of its Kambi-powered BetRivers site. Rush Street secured entry into the state through a partnership with J.P. McGill’s Hotel and Casino, another Triple Crown Casino property. The BetRivers site is set to launch at 10 am MT.

While the coronavirus pandemic has led to the shutdown of all major sports, Rush Street says it will launch with a selection of sports to bet on from around the world. These sports include Korean baseball, Russian ice hockey, English darts and Taiwanese basketball. The operator will also offer esports betting on events such as League of Legends, eNascar and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.

More operators coming soon

While there may be just four operators going live today, there are still plenty of other sports wagering operators making preparations to launch in the coming months.

PointsBet, which is partnered with Double Eagle Hotel and Casino, was one of the first to secure entry into the market and has confirmed it will be opening an office in Denver to support operations in the state.

The UK-based Smarkets is also expected to launch in the coming months after partnering with Full House Resort’s Bronco Billy’s Casino and receiving approval from the CLGCC. This will mark the operator’s entry into the US sports betting market.

William Hill, which is partnered with Lady Luck Casino and Isle Casino, plans to launch fairly soon after securing a license in early April. The Nevada-based SuperBook is also expected to go live in the coming months, after securing access to the market through a partnership with Lodge Casino and regulatory approval in April. The launch of SuperBook in Colorado will mark the operator’s first venture outside of Nevada.

Several other operators including BetAmerica, Betfred, Circa Sports, Digital Gaming, theScore and Wynn have all received regulatory approval to enter the state but have yet to outline their launch plans.

More licenses issued

At yesterday’s CLGCC meeting, the state regulator issued another wave of licenses relating to sports wagering.

The Sasquatch Casino was awarded a master sports betting license and a distributor license for slot machines. The Black Hawk owned Wild Card Saloon was also awarded a master license.

Carousel Group, which operates and received approval for a temporary internet sports betting license.

Swish Analytics received a vendor major licenses while 26 other service providers were awarded vendor minor license. Affiliate companies Better Collective and Group were among the 26 service providers to receive approval.

Sports betting in Colorado

The Centennial State narrowly legalized sports betting in November 2019 after voters approved the sports betting measure through a referendum.

Like New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Indiana, Colorado will allow sports bettors to register online accounts remotely from anywhere within state lines. When it comes to in-person wagering, only three towns in the state have been granted approval to offer in-person betting.

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