New York gaming regulators are close to deciding who will receive a coveted mobile NY sports betting license.
The New York State Gaming Commission alerted bidders of the final tax rate all operators must meet to be in the state. Tom Precious of the Buffalo News was first to tweet the report, which the commission confirmed to LSR.
According to the process outlined in the RFA, the tax rate can only be determined once all six bids are ranked by score. The highest tax rate submitted by any of the bidders is the tax rate that all winners must agree to pay.
What comes next in New York sports betting?
Bidders now know that tax rate and have until Monday to decide whether they agree to pay that rate should they win a license to operate online sports betting in New York. After those applications are amended, licenses could be handed out at the next commission meeting.
Agreeing to match the winning tax rate does not guarantee that a bidder will receive a license. The commission must award at least two platform licenses, but can distribute more if it sees benefit for the state.
This decision did not have to be made until Dec. 6, according to the RFA schedule. The commission did not require oral presentations from bidders, which might have sped up the process.
Who partnered on mobile NY sports betting bids?
A lot has happened in US sports betting since New York released details on its six bidders two and a half months ago so here’s a refresher on who bid together.
There are three consortium bids, two of which were dubbed “super bids” and a third with a new but big name attached:
- Bally Bet, BetMGM, DraftKings Sportsbook and primary applicant FanDuel Sportsbook.
- Caesars Sportsbook, PointsBet, Resorts World, Rush Street Interactive, WynnBET and primary applicant Kambi.
- Barstool Sportsbook, Fanatics Sportsbook and primary applicant Kambi.
There are also three standalone bids:
- FOX Bet
- theScore Bet
Remember, the state needs to pick at least two platform providers and at least four sportsbook operators.
What will the sports betting tax rate be?
All that can be assumed about the online sports betting tax rate in New York is that it will be at least 50%. That was a requirement from former Gov. Andrew Cuomo despite the bill allowing a lower minimum rate.
A bid of 50% or more is worth 20 points toward the total score. Each additional percentage point above 50% is worth an additional point. Agreeing to a higher tax rate now will not improve bid scoring for applicants.
The NYSGC released redacted bid packets from all six bidders in August that gave some details, though not many specific figures.
Research included in the FanDuel-led bid found more than four sportsbooks taxed at 50% would be unsustainable. The Kambi-led bid that includes Caesars Sportsbook, meanwhile, said up to nine sportsbooks could survive when taxed at 51%.
Addabbo expects launch ‘certainly’ by Super Bowl
Sen. Joe Addabbo is maintaining his optimistic outlook on how quickly sportsbooks could launch to capture NFL betting action.
“I’ll stick with the aggressive optimism that we’re going to do this hopefully by the beginning of the year and certainly by the Super Bowl.”
Addabbo, one of the main backers of mobile sports betting in New York, expects the winning operators to come out with a strong offering to draw bettors away from the illegal market and New Jersey.
“I lose my spaghetti,” Addabbo said about the more than $1 billion bet at NJ sportsbooks in September. “It bothers me because I know 25% of that is our money.”
If New Yorkers are not buying into the market designed by Cuomo, though, then the legislature needs to be ready to change things.
“We’ve got to be ready as a legislature to do what we have to do to make this a better product if need be,” Addabbo said.