WynnBet is the first online operator to receive approval for the upcoming Massachusetts sports betting market.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission on Tuesday voted unanimously to grant WynnBet an online sports betting license, after more than six hours of reviewing its app and accessing its economic benefit to the Commonwealth.
Under a bill signed by Gov. Charlie Baker in August, MA sports betting law allows up to 15 online sports betting apps, six of which must be partnered with one of three state casinos. Earlier this week, Encore Boston Harbor, WynnBet’s retail partner, became the first casino cleared for in-person sports betting.
Start date still unknown
Based on commentary from Tuesday’s meeting and from earlier meetings, the earliest Massachusetts might allow legal online sports betting is March 2023.
If the the meticulous nature in which commissioners have spent on reviewing first designated operators is any sign, it may take even longer.
Before it squares away an official start date, the MGC still needs to review Plainridge Park Casino and MGM Springfield, which are partnered with sports betting apps owned by their parent companies, Barstool Sportsbook and BetMGM.
Caesars, MGM and Barstool to come in Massachusetts sports betting
Caesars Sportsbook‘s application was on Tuesday’s agenda as well, though commissioners opted to focus on just WynnBet instead. With WynnBet now off the board, Caesars is the sole item on the agenda for their Dec. 14 meeting.
The MGC will convene Dec. 15 as well, when it should resume its review of BetMGM and Barstool Sportsbook retail partners. WynnBet and each operator approved after it will pay the state a $5 million licensing fee.
Once each retail entity and its online partners receive approval, the MGC should move on to the seven online sports betting licenses that do not require partnerships with an in-state gaming property. Several of those, including a spot Boston-headquarted DraftKings is vying for, are still up for grabs.