DraftKings Secures Entry in Michigan Sports Betting Market
Michigan entered the US sports betting fold this past March with the launch of retail betting at several of the state’s gambling properties.
However, since the coronavirus pandemic brought nearly all global sports to a halt and forced the closure of Michigan’s land-based casinos in mid-March, there has not been much athletic gambling action on the territory of the state since then.
But as sports are gradually resuming and states are gradually lifting restrictions, licensed betting operators are preparing for renewed interest in athletic gambling among US sports fans.
DraftKings’ New Partnership
DraftKings, which went public in April through a three-way deal, said Thursday that it has teamed up with Bay Mills Resort & Casino to enter the nascent Michigan sports betting market.
The company’s access to the local market is subject to all applicable licenses and regulatory approvals.
Bay Mills Resort & Casino is owned and operated by the Bay Mills Indian Community, one of the 12 Native American tribes running gambling venues in Michigan.
The state legalized retail betting late last year and, as mentioned earlier, its first physical sportsbooks opened doors in March. Michigan also plans to authorize digital wagering, but specific legislation on this form of gambling needs to be drafted and approved before interested operators can launch mobile betting apps and websites.
Under DraftKings’ recent partnership with Bay Mills Casino, the wagering operator will be able to launch a betting app in Michigan. DraftKings’ mobile betting product is currently available in seven states, with those being Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia.
In addition to mobile and desktop sportsbook access, the partnership with the tribal casino will also see DraftKings open a retail facility at Bay Mills Casino. Michigan is the seventh state that will be hosting a DraftKings brick-and-mortar betting facility. The operator currently operates retail sportsbooks in Colorado, Iowa, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, and New York.
Both DraftKings and Bay Mills Casino need to obtain regulatory approvals and licenses from Michigan gaming regulators in order to be able to launch sports betting services.
Commenting on their partnership with Bay Mills Casino, DraftKings Chief Business Officer Ezra Kucharz said that they are happy to partner with the tribal casino and that the “Great Lakes State presents a number of gaming opportunities” for the operator.
Bryan Newland, Tribal Chairman for the Bay Mills Indian Community, said that they are excited about their alliance with DraftKings and that expanding their entertainment options has always been their main goal. According to Mr. Newland their retail DraftKings Sportsbook “will be one more great reason for Michiganders to vacation with us in the Upper Peninsula.”
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