Ohio reaches 24 applicants for opening day of sports betting

The Ohio Casino Control Commission released an update on prospective applicants for the launch of mobile sports betting, revealing a further three applications. In total, there are 24 mobile operators that hope to be live for the first day of sports betting January 1st 2023.

The three new names in the update fall under the ‘2nd mobile management services provider’ category and belong to MaximBet, Prophet Exchange and Betway. Only two Type-A Sports Gaming Proprietors do not have agreements in place with Mobile Management Services Providers, being Dayton Real Estate Ventures LLC (Hollywood Gaming Dayton Raceway) and Miami Valley Gaming and Racing, LLC.

The regulator for Ohio has announced, to some bemusement, that regardless of what happens, the sports betting switch will be ‘flicked on’ at midnight on Jan 1st 2023. From now until the new year, mobile operators who have secured a day one launch will have time to build the product and ensure it’s ready.

The industry has overwhelmingly criticised the decision, insisting a mobile launch for a state at non-office hours is a potential recipe for disaster, but this remains to be seen as the regulator looks to press on with the plans.

Up to 1,200 sports kiosks expected in Ohio

The other outcome of the Wednesday Ohio Casino Control Commission meeting was the first 200 retailers who wish to host sports-betting kiosks have been approved. This is likely but a fraction of the total that will launch – given the state lottery already has well over 1,000 approved locations thus far – and it’s safe to assume most will latch sports.

Ohio’s population is 11.68m and sits as the seventh-most populous state in the United States. The commercial gambling landscape sees four casino-resorts operating alongside seven racinos. The racinos generated 57.5% of 2021’s US$2.31bn statewide commercial gaming revenue. Ohio was one of seven states that passed legislation to authorize sports betting in 2021, and will see the full launch at the beginning of 2023. It’ll be intriguing to see where the legalization of sports betting puts the state in the overall rankings come the end of 2023.

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