New York Gaming Commission Selects Nine Mobile Betting Licensees
The New York State Gaming Commission has recently approved licenses for nine mobile betting licensees. That means that New York bettors are moving closer to having locally approved mobile betting brands to make their sports wagers. The move has been applauded by many since it reduces the amount of revenue lost to neighboring states and offshore gambling sites accepting New York residents.
Stakeholders are currently looking into which location would be most suitable to house the gambling servers. That’s from the region’s four casinos. The state regulator will also have to approve the chosen option before the brands can start to offer their services to the area’s sports fans.
Current Position for New York Betting Fans
New York is one of the few North American states that are yet to approve mobile sports betting activities. Although it legalized in-person sports gambling years ago, research showed that several bettors prefer mobile betting. As such, most would have to travel to neighboring regions like New Jersey to enjoy mobile gambling. That’s because they approved these activities in 2018.
Out of the 32 North American states that have legalized sports betting, only 18 have gone as far as also legalizing mobile gambling. That’s why former Governor Andrew Cuomo started the process towards making these activities legitimate for its residents in April 2021.
Two groups made the mobile sports betting license applications. These are FanDuel and the Kambi Group.
Brands falling under the former’s license include DraftKings, BetMGM, and Bally. Meanwhile, those under the Kambi Group are Wynn Interactive, Resorts World, Rush Street Interactive, PointsBet, and Caesars Sportsbook.
Some of the brands that didn’t get licensed include Penn National Gaming and Fanatics Inc.
Taxation of License Holders
Although bettors can now comfortably make mobile bets within the region, it comes at a heavy price to the licensees. The bookmakers will have to endure a 51% taxation rate on their gross income from gambling activities.
That’s considerably high compared to what’s paid by other states holding mobile sports betting licenses in the US. They’re said to pay about 11% of their gambling revenue. The only other state with a rate that high is New Hampshire, at 51%.
Besides the taxation rate, the nine bookmakers also have to pay a one-time licensing fee of $25 million. Though it seems like a lot, New York is considered an optimum state for sports betting activities. Besides having a population of slightly over 20 million, its sports fanbase coupled with the wealth and income rates for residents means bookmakers have tapped into a lucrative market.
Tentative Launch Timeline
The licensing of these sportsbooks has been kept in line with timelines put in place by the New York State Gaming Commission. It’s something that even the BetMGM CEO, Adam Greenblatt, applauded when announcing the brand’s good fortunes.
As for when New Yorkers can start making mobile wagers on their favorite sports, the dates haven’t been set yet. But in May this year, lawmakers had an estimate that everything will be ready by January 2022. That way, by the time the 2022 Super Bowl begins, the state’s residents can comfortably bet from wherever they are, through mobile platforms.
The only details that need to get ironed out include deciding which of the four state casinos will house the servers. Once that’s decided, all licensed brands in the state will be required to pay $5 million annually to the casino that holds the servers.