Indiana Casino Partners With Upstart Sports Betting Provider

On Monday, one of Indiana’s casinos announced a deal with an under-the-radar sports betting vendor.

USA Sports Gaming LLC and Indianapolis-based Spectacle Entertainment, owner/operator of the Majestic Star Casino in northwest Indiana, made public their partnership for both retail and online/mobile betting in the Hoosier State. Indiana online/mobile sports betting began Oct. 3 with products from Rush Street Interactive (BetRivers) and DraftKings.

Majestic Star received a temporary certificate of authority for sports wagering from the Indiana Gaming Commission on Sept. 18, the latest property to do so.

USA Sports Gaming has yet to receive an approval by the state. After it receives a temporary vendor license, it will then need a mobile launch authorization. Under Indiana law, a company like USA Sports Gaming will have to pay a $100k vendor fee and $50k each year for renewal. A casino also owes the state a $100k fee.

Currently the website for shows only the logo and says “coming soon.” The press release does not indicate the software or technology powering the to-be-launched platform, or if it’s powered entirely in-house.

An Indiana sports betting first, and rarity

The deal appears to be USA Sports Gaming’s first sportsbook partnership, and also by virtue of its independence a “unicorn” in the U.S., where mostly deep-pocketed casino brands and entrenched brands have dominated the market.

“We are extremely pleased to sign this agreement with Majestic Star to launch our BetIndiana mobile product,” said Frank Ignatius, President of USA Sports Gaming. “In addition to Indiana, we are making plans to operate in several other markets around the country, as more and more states legalize sports betting.”

The company has been eyeing an entry into the Illinois market.

Ignatius continued: “Like BetIndiana, Spectacle Entertainment is an independent operator in the gaming industry, born in the Midwest and connected to our local markets. We see great synergy here and we’re confident we will provide bettors in Indiana with a book unlike any other in the state.”

The BetIndiana app will be marketed as being a local, Hoosier State product, with the label “Your Hometown Sportsbook,” according to a presser.

Retail wagering

Majestic Star is in the process planning a move to a more desirable location in downtown Gary, a relocation that was authorized under the gambling expansion package that also legalized sports betting. The new casino will use the prominent Hard Rock Casino brand.

Spectacle is eyeing a late 2020 opening for the first phase of the casino.

BetIndiana will be the brand for the casino’s retail sportsbook, according to the presser. Thirteen Indiana casinos have retail sports betting, and Majestic Star is not currently one of them.

“The partnership is a long-term deal and BetIndiana will continue to be a mobile sportsbook for Spectacle Entertainment’s planned future land-based casino adjacent to the Borman Expressway in Gary, Indiana,” the presser said. It’s unclear if BetIndiana will be the retail brand once Hard Rock Casino Gary opens.

Majestic Star will have a sportsbook while Spectacle slowly but surely moves forward with the relocation.