Oregon Sports Betting To Get DraftKings Sportsbook After Lotto Approval

Posted on August 27, 2021
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Written By on August 27, 2021

DraftKings Sportsbook will take over the only Oregon sports betting app as soon as possible after the Oregon Lottery approved the switch.

The Oregon Lottery Commission unanimously approved the switch to the namesake DraftKings app from the SBTech-powered Scoreboard. The change has been in the works for a while now: Director Barry Pack first mentioned a potential switch at a February meeting.

DraftKings then agreed to drop DFS in the state as an act of good faith during negotiations. The legal status of DFS in the state is questioned by some.

Same company, new Oregon sports betting account?

This will not come without some headaches, even though DraftKings bought SBTech last year. For starters, the switchover will be far from seamless, as all users will have to create a new sports betting account.

The good news for all of those underwhelmed by OR sports betting is the Lottery seems motivated to make the switch as soon as possible. Pack asked the Commission to approve the switch before the contract is negotiated and signed.

How soon could DraftKings come to Oregon sports betting?

The Lottery did not provide an estimated timeline during the meeting or when contacted by LSR after the fact.

The two sides talked about the transition since DraftKings bought SBTech, Pack said. The companies worked through legal issues during negotiations but it sounds like Pack wants the switch as soon as possible:

“The reason I’m bringing this to you today is one of the factors we’re going to have to work on soon is how to fit a transition from one platform to the other while still heading into a busy season of professional sports, both NFL and NBA coming up here really soon. So we want to make sure that we’re able to seize the right window when we have enough information to know what it’s going to take and how long it’s going to take to make the transition work.”

Pack: new app will make up for lost Scoreboard users

Hearing that Scoreboard users would need to create a new account when the current platform is owned by the new platform prompted Chairwoman MardiLyn Saathoff to ask an obvious question: why?

Pack did not have the clearest answer:

“I don’t know, I don’t have the right people on the team to explain this better but it is about just physically moving the bank accounts and re-establishing banking, I think, in the new platform. It’s not something that can just get transported over because of [Personally Identifiable Information] and things like that, I believe.”

That said, Pack expressed confidence the switch will be better overall. That is even if some current bettors do not make the switch.

“I would not expect a significant [revenue] drop,” Pack said. “We may see some players who choose not to make that transition but I think that will probably be offset by the improved customer experience and additional wagering options that the DraftKings platform will offer. The DraftKings platform is a lot more familiar to regular US sports bettors. The SBTech platform was more of a European design.”

So the commission approved a non-existent contract?

Oregon is the land of complicated contracts, so perhaps a quirk should have been expected.

Yes, the Oregon Lottery Commission unanimously approved a contract that does not yet exist in its final form. That was confirmed by a Lottery spokesperson after the vote:

“The commission today gave our director, Barry Pack, the authority to enter into a contract with DraftKings. We are currently in contract negotiations with DK to transition our current sports book over to their platform. Assuming the negotiations are fruitful, Barry has the delegated authority from the commission to sign a contract and move forward with the transition.”

That is a bit unusual and could get expensive if DraftKings is asking for a bigger piece of the pie. The Oregon Lottery and SBTech went out of their way to hide the details of their last contract, but a legal push jointly led by LSR led to its public release.

Under the SBTech contract, the lottery could be sharing as much as 51% of monthly revenue at maturity.

Matthew Waters Avatar
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Matthew Waters

Matthew Waters is a reporter covering legal sports betting and the gambling industry. Previous stops include Fantini Research and various freelance jobs covering professional and amateur sports in Delaware and the Philadelphia area.

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