Parx Anticipates June Rollout for Mobile Sports Betting; Penn. Board OKs Mohegan Sun Sportsbook

Posted on: May 18, 2019, 03:20h. 

Last updated on: May 18, 2019, 03:20h.

Pennsylvania is getting closer to offering mobile sports betting and other online gaming activities.

Parx Casino in Bensalem did not open its retail sportsbook until January. However, it may become the first in Pennsylvania to offer mobile sports betting. Casino officials expect to present their platform for state testing later this month. (Image: Bensalem Times)

Earlier this week, representatives from Greenwood Racing gave a presentation to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board in seeking a renewal of its gaming license. The company runs Parx Casino and Racetrack in Bensalem Township, which is about 20 miles northeast of Philadelphia.

During the presentation, company officials said the casino’s mobile sports wagering platform is being developed and expect it to be tested by the PGCB by the end of this month.

If all goes well, Bryan Bartlett, a vice president and CFO for Parx, said the sports betting application should launch in early June.

In addition, Bartlett said work also continues on its online casino application, which company officials expect will be ready by mid-July.

So, we got a lot going on, and we are planning to capitalize as much as we can on this,” Bartlett told commission members at Wednesday’s commission meeting.

The PGCB unanimously approved a five-year renewal of Parx’s gaming license.

Once the first mobile application goes online, Pennsylvania would join Nevada and New Jersey as states that allow online sports betting. Officials in New Jersey, Pennsylvania’s neighbor to the east, have noted that online betting makes up approximately 80 percent of the sports bets placed in the state.

In addition to the mobile application rollout, Parx officials also announced Wednesday that the casino’s permanent 10,000-square-foot sportsbook would open later this summer in time for the start of football season. While some sportsbooks in the state opened as early as last November, Parx did not open its sportsbook, currently running in a former casino bar, until January.

More Coming?

Currently, there are eight sportsbooks operating in the state. Whether Parx becomes the first to offer an online sports betting application remains to be seen, but so far, they’re the only ones who have tipped their hand in any way.

Richard McGarvey, a PGCB spokesman, told the state does not have an official date for the first launch. However, he acknowledged that it will be soon.

FanDuel, which runs a retail sportsbook in Pennsylvania at the Valley Forge Casino Resort, also is an online partner for the Meadowlands Racetrack in New Jersey. The Meadowlands, which also has a partnership with PointsBet, has generated more than $34.6 million in revenue from online sports betting in the first four months of 2019, making it the largest book in the state.

FanDuel spokesman Kevin Hennessey told there’s no official date yet for an online launch in Pennsylvania.

“Summer is what we can say now,” he added.

Mohegan Sun Sportsbook Approved

Also on Wednesday, the board unanimously approved a sportsbook license for Mohegan Sun Pocono located in Wilkes-Barre in the northeastern corner of the state.

Mohegan Sun is planning to build a 1,130-square-foot retail sportsbook that would accommodate up to 75 people, said Aviram Alroy, Mohegan Sun’s vice president for interactive gaming. In addition, Tony Carlucci, casino president and general manager, said self-serve kiosks will be placed throughout the facility, including near the casino entrance.

The casino’s sportsbook partners will include Kindred, which will manage the retail and – eventually – online outlets, and Kambi, which will handle the odds, monitor for fraud and manage pricing and trading services.

While the GCB approved the license, state officials still must conduct a review of the proposed sportsbook’s platform and an on-site inspection of the sportsbook. No timetable was given for the sportsbook’s opening.