Few Winners, Many Losers Due To End Of Online Sports Betting Registration

Written By Joe Boozell on April 6, 2021Last Updated on April 30, 2021
illinois sportsbook winners losers

On April 2, Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker decided to terminate online sports betting registration, a decision that is bound to have a widespread impact across the state.

The choice most severely affects the gambling consumer. While most IL sports betting operators experience it, not all do.

Operators of retail sportsbook locations closest to Chicago have an edge over their competitors, as Illinois’ recent increase in significance gives them an advantage.

Here are the sportsbooks that won and lost from Pritzker’s decision, as viewed from the operator’s perspective.

Victors: PointsBet and BetRivers

BetRivers and PointsBet own wholesale casinos in the Chicagoland region, putting them in a strong position to continue attracting customers. This is despite the fact that some sportsbooks may not experience substantial growth during this period.

Rivers Casino is located in Des Plaines, which is roughly a 25-minute drive from Chicago, depending on your exact location.

This move presents a win-win situation for Rivers. With BetRivers Sportsbook likely to reduce DraftKings and FanDuel’s dominance in the Illinois sports betting market, it could also potentially boost the number of visitors at the casino.

PointsBet Sportsbook currently has three retail locations in the region of Chicagoland, specifically in Stickney, Prospect Heights, and Crestwood. There are plans to potentially add a third location in Oakbrook soon.

PointsBet is currently ranked fourth among IL sportsbook operators in terms of monthly handle. Although it’s unlikely to become the market leader in the near future, it has the potential to expand its user base during in-person registration. Meanwhile, DraftKings and FanDuel’s growth may remain largely stagnant.

This leads us to our segment on the “losers”. Spoiler alert: In this situation, the losers greatly outnumber the finalists.

Losers: Every another casino in Illinois that is currently operating

The move will likely hinder the business growth of DraftKings and FanDuel, as previously mentioned.

What’s the positive update for the duo? Their Illinois-based business is thriving. Check out the profit splits for January:

Licensee Web company Handle in full Control Internet Shop Control Full Income Express Revenue Local Income Taxes
King of the Casino DraftKings $244,196,209 $243,538,843 $657,366 $16,423,303 $2,334,761 $154,716
Par-A-Dice FanDuel $173,480,933 $173,346,161 $134,771 $16,890,680 $2,514,187 $178,071
Rivers BetRivers $112,737,857 $108,990,832 $3,747,025 $10,807,475 $1,615,643 $135,856
Competition Course at Hawthorne PointsBet $40,591,090 $40,439,434 $151,657 $4,412,405 $630,133 $7,247
Victoria the Great Theodore Hill $9,270,978 $8,917,196 $353,782 $616,486 $73,260 $3,162
Argosy N/A $707,080 $0 $707,080 $103,761 $11,744 $0
Joliet from Hollywood N/A $309,047 $0 $309,047 $73,440 $9,001 $0
Aurora Hollywood N/A $260,106 $0 $260,106 $37,939 $3,065 $0
Total $581,553,300 $575,232,466 $6,320,834 $49,365,489 $7,191,795 $479,052

The betting market for IL activities is currently under the control of DraftKings and FanDuel, and they are expected to continue to thrive there.

While BetRivers and PointsBet may have reduced their market share, it’s not entirely negative when you take into account the customers they have already secured.

That being said, FanDuel is at a disadvantage in the sphere of in-person membership due to DraftKings’ retail locations in West Illinois.

FanDuel Sportsbook & Horse Racing in Collinsville is the only place where customers can register for FanDuel. Although the track may attract many visitors from the St. Louis area, these individuals will not be able to place bets via their phones once they return to Missouri, due to the state’s prohibition of sports betting.

This also applies to DraftKings Sportsbook, where customers are only allowed to register at DraftKings at Casino Queen in East St. Louis.

However, this is probably the most challenging for existing operators, like Barstool Sportsbook.

Barstool made its debut midway through March, following in the footsteps of DraftKings and FanDuel. The operator was given less than a quarter to attract online users in Illinois.

Barstool’s retail partner is Hollywood Casino Aurora, located in Aurora, which is the second-most populous city in Illinois. This is an advantage, but it’s challenging to see the positives when they had approximately seven months less of remote registration compared to their competitors.

The profit record for March should be released in mid-May. At that point, we will gain more insight into the initial success of Barstool.

  • The Illinois House Executive Committee deliberated on various significant gaming matters in Illinois, including in-person registration. Discover the supporters and opponents of online registration in the context of major gaming proposals.

More morons: Every conceivable casino in Illinois

Approaching operators may not find it appealing to open a betting establishment in this Illinois-based environment.

BetMGM and Unibet are currently in the pipeline. Unibet is likely to enter the market in agreement with Argosy Casino Alton, whereas BetMGM is most expected to collaborate with Par-A-Dice Casino.

Considering the significant head start other providers have had, it’s hard to envision immediate success with in-person membership for either, even if they receive approval from the Illinois Gaming Board.

TheScore Bet also has a deal that grants them access to the market. However, entering any new market that already has established operators can be difficult, even without the necessity for in-person registration.

Non-residents have the opportunity to bid on one of Illinois’ 20 million mobile-only certificates, expected to be available by year-end. However, this opportunity may not immediately appear to be logical.

The price tag is substantial. Moreover, if one of these licenses is granted, online registration would become available for everyone again. This would significantly benefit the mystery operator’s competition.

Currently, as you can observe, Illinois is enjoying a good time.

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Boozell, Joe

Joe Boozell has been a college sports writer for NCAA.com since 2015. He has also had his work featured on Bleacher Report, FoxSports.com, and NBA.com. Boozell, in his youth, competed against both Anthony Davis and Frank Kaminsky in the Chicago basketball scene – the results of which can be left to the imagination.

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