888Sport & Betsson set to launch Sportsbooks in Colorado

The rapidly growing online sports betting industry in Colorado is set to welcome another two new online sportsbooks – 888Sport and Betsson. Given both are big and experienced global operators, they are expected to hit the ground running in the Mile-High State.

At first, both are granted temporary licensing for the two operators to set up shop while Colorado’s state gaming regulators put the final touches to their permanent licensing. The five-member committee of the Colorado Limited Gaming Control Commission unanimously passed both companies’ applications, and 888Sport and Betsson now have approval pending the usual regulatory background investigations.

888Sport was able to apply for a Colorado online sports betting license through a land-based partnership with the Grande Casino in Cripple Creek, while Betsson has reached their bricks-and-mortar casino agreement with Dostal Alley Casino in Central City to allow the sportsbook operator to apply for a license.

At this stage, early 2021 appears to be the likely launch date for both sportsbooks.

2021 to see another Wave of Sportsbooks entering the Colorado Market

Early 2021 should see another ‘wave’ in Colorado’s sports betting boom with a number of companies launching apps including big Australian operator PlayUp, the world’s biggest global sportsbook brand Bet365, European sports wagering giant Tipico, BetAmerica, and Wynn Sports in addition to Betsson and 888Sport.

Betsson initially announced their plans with a media statement back in July from the group’s CEO Pontus Lindwall to launch in Colorado;

“I am very excited to reach this milestone, further expanding Betsson’s global reach by entering a new continent through the fast-growing online market in the US. Dostal Alley Casino has more than 60 years of experience of doing business in Colorado and will play an important role in our journey to build US presence. The whole country has a strong culture of gambling and is now experiencing online penetration at accelerated pace, where consumers are transitioning from traditional retail outlets to also now bet on their mobile devices.” Lindwall wrote.

Meanwhile, 888Sport announced in early December that their first plans to extend their wings beyond New Jersey  includes Colorado, Iowa and Indiana;

“We are delighted to sign these agreements…that will enable 888 to bring its first-class online sportsbook to bettors in Colorado, Iowa and Indiana. The U.S. online betting and gaming market has huge growth potential” 888 Group CEO Itai Pazner wrote.

Expansion comes at a Boom Time for Colorado Online Sports Betting

The Mile-High State of Colorado accepted its first sports wagers on May 1 2020 and has seen steady growth since then reporting progressively rising month-on-month sports betting handle records. Most recently, total sports betting handle for October jumped by $3 million compared to September. The record sports betting handle figure for October was $210.7 million, an increase of 1.5% from September’s total of $207.7 million.

Part of the reason for these monster numbers is the high exposure of online sportsbooks in the public eye in Colorado given the historic FanDuel partnership with the Denver Broncos which was followed up by BetMGM also signing a deal with the Broncos. Signage throughout the stadium and TV broadcasts have displayed sports wagering in full view for the very first time in the state’s history.

Operators have been moving quickly to enter the Colorado market. Experienced Australian-based sportsbook operator PointsBet, who have also agreed to deals with several major U.S professional sports teams, launched its online sports betting platform in Colorado in November.

Once 888Sport and Bettson are up and running, there will be a total of 18 online sports betting operators in the Mile-High State for Colorado bettors to enjoy with more to come in 2021.

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