Caesars Sportsbook and Plainridge Park Casino are the latest winners in the bidding for sports betting licenses in the state of Massachusetts.
Caesars was awarded a temporary license to operate as an online and mobile app sportsbook in the state. The Massachusetts Gaming Commission voted unanimously in favor of the Caesars application.
Online and mobile sports betting apps must be tethered to a brick-and-mortar casino in order to be granted a license to operate in the state. Caesars is partnered with Encore Boston Harbor Casino in Everett. WynnBET, the first mobile sports betting app to be licensed in Massachusetts, is also paired with Encore Boston Harbor. Wynn Resorts owns Encore Boston Harbor. Caesars made a deal with Wynn to operate through one of the online skins available from Encore Boston Harbor.
Each retail casino is entitled to hold a maximum of two online skins. The license fee in Massachusetts is $1 million.
Although the decision to grant Plainridge Park Casino a temporary retail sports betting license was also approved via unanimous decision, it came with a caveat attached to it relating to Plainridge Park’s online partner Barstool Sportsbook.
Commissioners required that the licensee agrees that no persons under the age of 21 will be permitted entrance into any live Barstool College Football Show events,” the MGC wrote in announcing the awarding of the Plainridge Park license. “Additionally, the licensee must fully cooperate with the (MGC’s Investigations and Enforcement Bureau), which will conduct an investigation of Barstool Sports, Inc. in connection with the licensee’s branding.”
“I’ve made it pretty clear I want a full suitability review of Barstool,” said Commissioner Eileen O’Brien, according to CBS Boston. Plainridge Park is owned and operated by Penn Gaming, which also owns 30% of Barstool Sports.
All three of the state’s casinos – Encore Boston Harbor, MGM Springfield and Plainridge Park – are now licensed for retail sports betting. BetMGM is the holder of the other online and mobile license granted so far. Regulators are estimating that retail sports betting will be launching in Massachusetts in late January, in time for the Super Bowl. Online sports betting won’t be arriving until early March, just prior to March Madness getting underway.