State of Massachusetts begins to gauge sports betting appetite

Neil Roarty profile picture
Updated 1 month ago on
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The Massachusetts Gaming Commission (“MGC”) has issued a statement and released a ‘notice of intent form’, asking that sports betting operators provisionally interested in acquiring a license complete the form by the close of August 2022.

The notice of intent is not to be considered an application for a sports wagering license, and anyone that does not complete the form will not be banned from entering an application later down the line when the official application procedure begins.

The release of the form follows the legislature’s passing of the Governor’s signing of House Bill No. 5164 – An Act to Regulate Sports Wagering.

The form reads: “This form is being requested for informational purposes only and to aid the MGC in understanding potential interest in licenses for sports wagering. This notice of intent is not to be construed as an application or request for a temporary license and does not bind the MGC in any way.”

Who are they looking for? 

The Notice of Intent has 10 questions, with business types listed including the following:

  • Holds a gaming license as defined in section 2 of 23K
  • Licensed by the MGC in accordance with c. 128A to conduct a live horse racing meeting
  • Running horse racing licensee that conducted simulcast wagering as of 12/31/20
  • Greyhound meeting licensee that conducted simulcast wagering as of 12/31/20
  • Offers an interactive sports wagering platform through a mobile application or other digital-platform
  • None of the above

The State also explores jurisdictions which each provisional operator has prior applied, and holds licenses and also asks for the type of business it will be looking to conduct in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

What’s the timeline for legal sports betting in MA?

Upon the final moment passing of the bill to legalize sports betting, the Commissioner Bradford Hill warned that getting sports betting right may take some time. He stated “If we are going to do this right, we need to take our time a little bit”.

As such, no timeline can be currently put on the progress of sports betting; unlike other States with which they hope for a launch before the NFL season gets underway in September. One would assume, as is normally the case, that MA will target the Super Bowl for launch given the seismic wagering that historically takes place for the US’ largest sporting event.

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Neil Roarty is a gambling industry veteran with over 15 years experience writing and editing in both Europe and North America. He is a regular speaker at gambling conferences and appears as an author in many industry publications.

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