Arizona Sports Betting Poised for September 9th Kickoff (Updated)

arizona online sports betting

The Arizona Department of Gaming today will submit its rules and regulations for Arizona online sports betting and daily fantasy sports to the U.S. Secretary of State’s office, which puts sports betting on track for a Sept. 9 launch.

During a virtual hearing for the state’s final proposed sports betting and daily fantasy sports rules, Arizona Department of Gaming Director (ADG) Ted Vogt laid out an aggressive timeline for the allocation of sports betting licenses.

If the federal government approves the state’s sports betting rules and regulation, Vogt explained a Sept. 9 sports betting launch would likely be possible.

Arizona Online Sports Betting Timeline

Here’s the tentative Arizona sports betting timeline:

  • July 26: State submits sports betting rules and regulations to the U.S. Secretary of State’s Applications for licenses will immediately begin.
  • Aug. 16: Qualified license applicants are notified.
  • Aug. 27: Allocation of licenses are announced.
  • Aug. 28: Marketing for sports betting is allowed
  • Sept. 9: Arizona sports betting is launched.

All of this is predicated on the filing and approval of the rules today, Vogt said.

The state will allow for as many as 20 licenses, split evenly between Arizona professional sport franchises and Native American tribes who have signed the most recent tribal-state gaming compact. The bill allows Arizona’s professional sport franchises to run sportsbooks at their facilities and partner with online sportsbook operators. There are currently six professional sports franchises in Arizona and 22 Native American tribes.

Additionally, 10 licenses for “limited event wagering operators” are available, but the holders need to partner with one of the 20 event wagering operators. The ADG is still working out the details for these limited operator licenses.

If more applicants apply for available licenses in either the professional sports franchise, tribal or limited event wagering operator category, the ADG will evaluate each applicant’s bid package to determine who best meets 19 specific criteria laid out in the sports betting rules and regulations, Vogt said.

The department announced an in-person sports betting tax rate of 8% and an online sports betting tax rate of 10%.

One interesting note in the proposed rules is the possibility of a sports betting operator having up to two digital platforms. A second digital platform is not automatically granted for license holders, as it would have to be approved by the ADG after its justified as a necessity by the operator.

Arizona Sports Betting Partnerships

At least eight partnerships have already been made for sports betting in the state so far. Both FanDuel and DraftKings announced early partnerships in Arizona, with DraftKings agreeing to expand its existing commercial relationship with the PGA Tour to bring retail and mobile sports betting to TPC Scottsdale. FanDuel announced a partnership with the Phoenix Suns to build a luxury 6,300 square-foot in-arena sportsbook for the 2021-2022 NBA season.

Barstool sportsbook recently announced a partnership with NASCAR and Phoenix Raceway to provide online and in-person sports betting at the track.

Here are the other announced partnerships in the state:

  • The Phoenix Mercury and Bally’s Corporation announced a 15-year gaming agreement in late June, the first gaming access deal for a professional women’s sports team. It provides Bally’s market access to its 15th state, according to a press release.
  • Caesars also announced a partnership with the Arizona Diamondbacks to launch mobile sports betting in Arizona and build a sportsbook and bar concept on the plaza adjacent to the team’s home, Chase Field.
  • WynnBet announced its own partnership with the San Carlos Apache Tribe to pursue an online sports betting license in Arizona as well.
  • PointsBet and Cliff Castle Hotel Casino have partnered in the state of Arizona in order to set the path to offer legal online sports betting in the state upon launch. Cliff Castle Casino Hotel is owned and operated by the Yavapai-Apache Nation tribe, and this allows for PointsBet to be one of the 20 legal sportsbooks that can be offered in the state of Arizona.
  • Kindred Group (Unibet) announced a 10-year partnership with the Quechan Tribe of the Fort Yuma Indian Reservation in early 2021 to offer in-person and online sports betting.

Update:

The ADG announced its final rules have been posted to its website and the state is now open to accepting sports betting licenses.

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