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BetMGM secures Illinois sports betting license

BetMGM sports betting news

After close to six months of waiting, BetMGM has finally added Illinois to its growing list of approved states.

The five-member Illinois Gaming Board (IGB) signed off on the operator’s license bid in its Thursday meeting last week, allowing it to join the state’s booming sports betting market. The sportsbook’s operations in Illinois will be tied to Par-A-Dice Casino in East Peoria.

BetMGM submitted its application back in September 2020, but it did not find a retail partner in the state until FanDuel transferred its license from Par-A-Dice Casino to FanDuel Sportsbook & Horse Racing – previously Fairmount Park Racetrack – in March 2021. Following the Thursday decision, the operator will team up with the Boyd Gaming-owned facility to launch both online and retail betting in the Prairie State, although the rollout is still subject to regulatory approvals.

BetMGM is the seventh company to receive a mobile betting license in Illinois. The operator will join DraftKings, FanDuel, BetRivers, PointsBet, Caesars, and Barstool in the state when it commences operations.

When will BetMGM launch in Illinois?

BetMGM had earlier revealed plans to go live in Illinois in Q1 of 2022, and the recent approval by the state regulator will go a long way in helping it to achieve that goal.

Commenting on the accreditation, the company said that it is thrilled to be licensed in the jurisdiction and that it is looking forward to making its debut in Illinois when remote registration commences on March 5. Currently, players who want to place mobile bets with IGB-licensed digital sportsbooks have to visit the platforms’ retail partners for in-person registration.

“We’re thrilled that BetMGM is now licensed in Illinois,” said BetMGM CEO Adam Greenblatt in a statement.

“We thank the Illinois Gaming Board and pending regulatory approvals, look forward to bringing BetMGM leading sports betting experience to Illinois sports fans on March 5, when digital registration is permitted in the state.”

This means that BetMGM’s premium sportsbook will be available to Illinois bettors before this year’s NCAA Division 1 Men’s Basketball Tournament, popularly known as March Madness. The tournament will kick off on March 13 and end on April 4.

BetMGM continues to make strides in US market

The approval by the IGB is a huge milestone for BetMGM. Illinois, which is among the top five sports betting markets nationally, will be crucial to the operator as it continues to work towards extending its footprint in the United States gambling market.

BetMGM is currently operational in 20 states, 15 of which are online markets.

In January alone, the operator launched its digital sports wagering platform in New York, and it was also among those green-lighted to start offering mobile betting in Louisiana when the market got off the ground on Friday. The other states in which the company has an online presence include New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Colorado, Iowa, Indiana, Tennessee, Washington DC, Wyoming, Arizona, West Virginia, Virginia, and Nevada.

In addition to these states, the company is also looking forward to launching its online sportsbook in Maryland when the jurisdiction rolls out mobile betting. Maryland is one of five states where BetMGM has a retail-only presence currently, the others being Mississippi, Washington State, Oregon, and South Dakota.

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