NEW YORK, July 13, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Casinos and gambling have been large markets for many years, but sports betting has a been a slow growing segment; until recently. In large part, the slow growth of sports betting in years past is attributed to numerous legal restrictions across most states as well as a lack of access due to insufficient technological infrastructure. Now, the sports betting market is changing and growing rapidly. It started with the landmark Supreme Court ruling in 2018, in which the Court struck down the ban on sports betting. As a result, all states got the option to pursue legalization of sports betting. Overall, as the legal infrastructure becomes more friendly towards sports betting, specifically in the online space, many companies in the gambling industry are beginning to invest in a wider variety of sports betting options. According to a report by the Associated Press, companies like DraftKings are making serious strides in developing easy-to-use systems available to the public through partnerships with sports leagues. FansUnite Entertainment Inc. (OTC: FUNFF) (CSE: FANS), Century Casinos, Inc. (NASDAQ: CNTY), Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE: BYD), Esports Entertainment Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: GMBL), Scientific Games Corporation (NASDAQ: SGMS)
Recently, the advancement of sports betting in Illinois took place, vastly expanding the mobile wagering options available to the state's 12.7 million residents. Furthermore, data from Odds.com and published by Forbes showed that Illinois is poised to generate upwards of USD 73 Million in taxable revenue if the estimates of a USD 488 Million annual market come to fruition. The 15% tax levied on gaming revenue could see this number rapidly increase once measures to allow online and mobile offerings are put in place.
FansUnite Entertainment Inc. (OTC: FUNFF) (CSE: FANS) just announced breaking news that, "their acquisition of McBookie Ltd ("McBookie") has emerged from the Coronavirus Pandemic with a strong set of results.
The Scottish-based sportsbook operator was purchased by FansUnite in March, 2020 and has delivered a Year over Year ("YOY") increase in Gross Gaming Revenue over the Q2 period of 131%. The majority of that has been delivered by the casino where YOY turnover in Q2 was up 59% from $2.4M CAD to $3.9M CAD, resulting in a gross margin increase of 191%.
'Since acquiring McBookie we have been consistently impressed with their ability to navigate uncertain environments and the global pandemic this past few months has been no exception,' said Darius Eghdami, Chairman and CEO of FansUnite Entertainment. 'During Q2, the team showed an impressive 59% increase in casino betting. Further, the launch of a virtual sports offering in March was timely, delivering turnover in excess of $500,000 CAD and, together with the strong performance of the casino, has compensated for the lack of betting opportunities for customers in traditional sports.'
With the return of some sports such as the English Premier League, McBookie also grew sportsbook turnover in June by 45% YOY.
Eghdami added, 'Perhaps the most pleasing aspect of the figures was the way the sportsbook bounced back in June. McBookie is now in a very good position to deliver strong growth once the full complement of sports return in the fall.'
McBookie founder and Director Paul Petrie stated, 'We have used the period of the pandemic to work closely with the FansUnite team to improve our operational and marketing techniques and are now in a really good place to drive the business forward when the Scottish football season is set to return on August 1st.'"
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Century Casinos, Inc. (NASDAQ: CNTY) reported back in April that its Colorado subsidiaries received approval for three Sports Betting Master Licenses. The licenses were awarded during a special meeting of the Colorado Limited Gaming Control Commission held on April 2nd, 2020. In addition, the Commission awarded Circa Sports Colorado LLC, the Company's partner for one of its Master Licenses, with a temporary Internet Sports Betting Operator License. The Commission is moving forward with licensing and will meet the May 1st, 2020 legislative launch date deadline. Due to impact of the pandemic on the sports betting industry, the Company is uncertain of the timeline that the Circa | Sports TM mobile sports betting app will launch.
Boyd Gaming Corporation (NYSE: BYD) and FanDuel Group announced last year the debut of FanDuel Sportsbooks at four Boyd Gaming properties: Blue Chip Casino Hotel and Spa in Michigan City, Indiana; Diamond Jo Casino in Dubuque, Iowa; Diamond Jo Casino in Northwood, Iowa; and Belterra Casino Resort in Florence, Indiana. The openings follow the successful debut of the FanDuel Sportsbook at Boyd Gaming's Valley Forge Casino Resort in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, in March, as well as the companies' launch of mobile sports betting across the state of Pennsylvania in July. In the coming months, the two companies also plan to introduce mobile sports products under the FanDuel brand in both Iowa and Indiana, pending the receipt of required regulatory approvals. "Together, Boyd Gaming and FanDuel Group continue to successfully capitalize on the historic opportunity afforded by the legalization and expansion of sports betting in new states across the country," said Keith Smith, President and Chief Executive Officer of Boyd Gaming. "The FanDuel Sportsbook is off to a great start in Pennsylvania, contributing to solid growth in visitation and profitability at our Valley Forge Casino Resort near Philadelphia. We are confident our partners at FanDuel will deliver excellent results in Iowa and Indiana as well, further expanding Boyd Gaming's customer base and enhancing our long-term competitive appeal."
Esports Entertainment Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: GMBL) announced last week that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire LHE Enterprises Ltd, the holding company of online sportsbook and casino operator Argyll Entertainment AG and its operating subsidiaries. Closing of the acquisition is expected to occur on or before July 31st, 2020. "Reaching a definitive agreement to complete our first acquisition as a NASDAQ company is a major milestone," commented Grant Johnson, CEO of Esports Entertainment Group. "Argyll CEO Stuart Tilly and CFO Dan Marks already joined our senior leadership team in June as Corporate Secretary and Chief Financial Officer, respectively. They are a great addition to our organization and will help us build on Argyll's base of more than 100,000 registered users, placing us in a great position to grow revenue moving forward."
Scientific Games Corporation (NASDAQ: SGMS) and gaming operator Caesars Entertainment, have extended their existing digital sports betting partnership in preparation for the relaunch of the 2020/21 major league sports seasons. The move comes following recent mobile sports wagering launches in Pennsylvania and Indiana and the launch of online casino gaming in Pennsylvania. "We're delighted with our partnership with Caesars Entertainment. We're working side by side, supporting their excellent teams and playing an important role in delivering digital casino and sports betting products to their players across multiple states," said Jordan Levin, Group CEO, Digital for Scientific Games. Levin continued, "Caesars has always been a market leader, well known for delivering superior player experiences in the traditional gaming space. Our scalable technology, complemented with a U.S. player centric experience, enables Caesars to deliver on their service legacy by offering exceptional betting and digital gaming experiences that reach new audiences across key markets."
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