Just before the weekend, the Arizona Department of Gaming announced the 18 entities that received licenses to operate mobile and retail sports betting in the state.
That list included the Ak-Chin Indian Community, which runs Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino, a property owned by Caesars Entertainment. Natural thinking suggests that Caesars would have powered any regulated wagering offered by the Arizona casino. Of course, considering Caesars partnered with the Arizona Diamondbacks, that cannot happen now.
So the question over the weekend became, “Who will the Ak-Chin choose?”
The answer officially came Monday morning. Fubo Gaming has secured an Arizona market access agreement courtesy of the Ak-Chin Indian Community.
What we know about Fubo Sportsbook
Fubo Gaming, a subsidiary of the sports-first live TV streaming platform fuboTV, now has a path to roll out its Fubo Sportsbook mobile app in the Grand Canyon State. It marks the fifth market access agreement announced by Fubo. The group also has deals to launch in Iowa, Indiana, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
According to a press release, Fubo Sportsbook expects to launch “in the fourth quarter” of 2021.
“This agreement marks another monumental step in our journey to bringing Fubo Sportsbook to consumers, expanding our sportsbook’s reach to at least five states,” David Gandler, co-founder and CEO of fuboTV, said in the release. “We’re committed to meeting sports fans where they are and delivering what they truly want — a more personalized, interactive sports entertainment experience, all within the fuboTV ecosystem.”
Fubo to integrate streaming, betting
Fubo intends to integrate streaming and betting within its mobile app. This creates “an interactive omniscreen entertainment ecosystem” on the platform. In addition, by using data from its betting and streaming apps, Fubo learns wagering and viewing preferences of its customers. As a result, the sportsbook can recommend relevant bets to users, “turning passive viewers into active, engaged participants.”
“We are thrilled to partner with Ak-Chin for a market access agreement in Arizona,” said Scott Butera, president of Fubo Gaming.
“Our comprehensive sports entertainment experience is envisioned to combine real-money wagering with fuboTV’s live sports offering for a seamless user experience enabling consumers to wager while they watch. Arizonans are passionate professional and collegiate sports fans who we believe will enjoy the market defining Fubo Sportsbook.”
Ak-Chin lands AZ sports betting partner ahead of launch
The timing of this announcement comes at an opportune time for both parties.
As mentioned, the ADG announced last week that the Ak-Chin Indian Community received one of 10 tribal licenses to offer retail sports betting and launch mobile betting apps in Arizona.
With Fubo now in place, the licensee can power forward with its sports betting plans. Still, Fubo Sportsbook won’t be ready to launch in time for the state’s go-live date of Sept. 9. The company has simply stated a target rollout of Q4 2021.
Yet that has not dampened the spirits of Fubo or the Ak-Chin, as indicated by tribal chairman Robert Miguel.
“This is a tremendously exciting day for the entire Ak-Chin Indian Community. With this sports betting license and our strategic partnership with Fubo Sports, we know we’ll be able to offer our customers the kind of premier entertainment experience they’ve come to expect from Ak-Chin, whether they visit our sportsbook in-person or online.”