On Tuesday, the Kindred Group, owner of the Unibet sports betting brand, announced a market access deal with casino operator Caesars Entertainment.
The linkage will give Unibet access to both the Indiana and Iowa sports wagering markets. Both states currently have regulated online/mobile wagering, each kicking off in the second half of 2019.
The partnership also includes “potentially additional states,” said a presser.
In Indiana, Kindred will offer online gambling under Caesars’ Horseshoe Hammond Property. In Iowa, the deal involves Harrah’s Council Bluffs. Unibet is already live with iGaming in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Horseshoe Hammond, which is located near the lucrative Chicago gambling market, has the leading Indiana retail sportsbook. It took $13.7 million in bets last month.
Unlike Indiana and Iowa, both New Jersey and Pennsylvania have legalized online casino gambling as well.
“We are thrilled to further extend our presence in the U.S. together with one of the world’s most renowned and diversified casino-entertainment providers,” Manuel Stan, SVP of Kindred US, said in a statement. “Caesars’ geographical spread in the U.S. gives us a unique opportunity to build our footprint, with Indiana and Iowa next in line and potential other states lined up.”
Though it has partners in the internet betting space, Caesars also utilizes its own branding for online gambling. It’s unclear what the company will end up doing in Indiana, as state law allows up to three skins.
Indiana market becoming more crowded
There are currently four online/mobile sportsbooks — DraftKings, BetRivers, FanDuel, and BetAmerica — live in Indiana cyberspace. The likes of PointsBet, BetMGM, BetIndiana, FOX Bet, and Smarkets are expected to also eventually be active in the market.
Indiana has one of the most industry-friendly online sports betting markets to date. There’s a low tax rate of under 10%, no data mandates for the sports leagues, no restrictions on collegiate wagering, and no in-person online account registration requirement.
In January, the statewide Indiana handle was $170.8 million, a new high for the state. Retail accounted for $47.5 million, with the four online/mobile sportsbooks accounting for $123.3 million in handle, a new record for internet sports wagering in the Hoosier State.
That translated to an online/mobile handle share of about 72%, up from about 68% in December. That percentage will only increase over time, thanks in part to additional sports betting launches. In New Jersey, that figure is close to 90% on a monthly basis.
Image courtesy of Caesars