The state of Indiana is slowly adding more companies to its list of sports wagering approvals. According to the most recent batch of temporary vendor licenses, FanDuel and Rush Street Interactive, both powerhouse brands in the industry, have been approved for gambling in the state.
Indiana is expected to see its first retail sportsbooks open in early September, ahead of the first game of the NFL season. Online/mobile sportsbooks could debut later in a matter of a handful of weeks, setting up a fall launch. The Hoosier State legalized sports betting earlier this year, and it’s been moving full steam ahead in implementing the new law.
Temporary vendor licenses issued
Betfair Interactive US (d/b/a FanDuel Sportsbook) last week was awarded temporary vendor licenses for sports betting with two brick-and-stick properties, Blue Chip Casino and Belterra Casino Resort. Blue Chip is located along the Indiana-Michigan border, while the latter sits on the Ohio River north of Louisville.
In August 2018, FanDuel formed a partnership for online and retail sports gambling with Boyd Gaming, owner of both Blue Chip and Belterra. FanDuel runs the retail sportsbook at Boyd Gaming’s Valley Forge Casino in Pennsylvania, as well as an online book that launched in July.
Rush Street Interactive, owner of the Play SugarHouse online sportsbook in Pennsylvania, will offer sports betting with the French Lick Resort, located about 100 miles south of Indianapolis.
Additionally, Caesars Interactive Entertainment was awarded a temporary vendor license last week. CIE will operate under the Horseshoe Casino Hammond license, though Caesars has other properties in the state. Horseshoe Hammond is located near Chicago.
Penn Sports Interactive was also approved last week, under its Hollywood Casino in Lawrenceburg, which sits outside the Cincinnati gambling market. Ohio casinos aren’t allowed to have sports betting, though the Buckeye State is currently mulling over a pair of bills.
In addition to the aforementioned vendors, the Indiana Gaming Commission has awarded temporary certificates of authority for sports betting to 14 casinos.
Online launch timeline?
With some online gambling entities already receiving approval by the Hoosier State, signs point to a fall launch for online betting. Earlier this year, one of the sponsors of the sports betting legislation anticipated that online books could be operational in early September. That turned out to be too optimistic, but about halfway through the NFL season is a realistic expectation at this point.
Sources informed Hoosier State Bets that online gambling is fast-approaching on the horizon for Indiana sports bettors. It’s almost certainly going to come this year.
The IGC is set to approve draft regulations for retail and online/mobile sports betting at its Aug. 28 meeting. Regulators last month also put forward a robust list of approved sports to bet on.
Under Indiana’s sports betting law, there is no date or timeline for the launch of online/mobile betting. It’s under the discretion of the IGC to make that call, and of course on individual operators to show regulators that they are ready to undergo a soft launch.