Bet365 Secures Sports Wagering License In Arizona Through Partnership With Ak-Chin Indian Community

Written By Dan Holmes on August 30, 2023 - Last Updated on October 26, 2023
Bet365 sportsbook az license

Arizona will have one more sportsbook in the marketplace soon. The Arizona Department of Gaming announced that bet365 has been awarded a sports wagering operator license.

The license has been secured in a pairing with the Ak-Chin Indian Community, located in the Santa Cruz Valley of Southern Arizona, just south of Phoenix. Arizona has two more sports betting licenses remaining that can be issued.

Bet365 is based in the United Kingdom, where it’s forged a successful sports betting operation in several countries in the European Union. The company has launched its sports betting app in Colorado, Iowa, New Jersey, Ohio, and Virginia. It will soon be available in Kentucky, as well, indicating further expansion plans for bet365 in the U.S.

When will Bet365 Sportsbook launch?

There is no official word yet as to when bet365 sportsbook AZ will be available for download in the state. It’s likely that the company will attempt to launch quickly to take advantage of the college football and NFL seasons. Bet365 is known for good promotional offers, as well as a nice interface for live betting.

Last October, Fubo Sportsbook shuttered in Arizona following a short-lived offering in the state, which launched legal online sports betting in 2021.

Essentially the ADG awarded the Fubo license to bet365, bringing the total of sports betting operators in Arizona to 17.

As of now, the Arizona Department of Gaming has two more Arizona online sports betting licenses open, but they are assigned to professional sports teams. Legislators could amend the rules and add more operator licenses in the future, but that is not a given or up for discussion at the moment.

WynnBET Exit Could Open Another License Soon

The jockeying has been feverish in recent months in Arizona. Last month, WynnBET announced that it would close its sportsbook in the state as part of a multi-state strategy to limit its liabilities in the competitive industry.

The WynnBET license was via the San Carlos Apache Tribe. With that partnership ending, it’s possible the ADG could open another license soon. When they do, that would leave one license available with a tribe partnership, as well as two tethered to sports franchises.

The only Arizona sports team to not yet sign a deal with a betting partner is the Phoenix Rising.

Who could snag remaining AZ sports betting licenses?

There are two big names looming over the desert sunsets as far as Arizona sportsbooks: Fanatics and ESPN. Both companies plan to aggressively enter markets with their new products.

Fanatics Sportsbook will launch in several states in the next few months. The company made a bold statement earlier in 2023 when it purchased the U.S. assets of PointsBet. With deep pockets and a gigantic customer database from its sports apparel and collectibles business, Fanatics could be a major force in sports betting in a smaller state like Arizona.

Earlier this month, PENN Entertainment announced that it had entered into a 10-year, $2.1 billion partnership with ESPN, one of the world’s most recognizable sports and entertainment brands. PENN severed its relationship with Barstool, and will replace it with ESPN Bet, as soon as this fall in some states.

Barstool Sportsbook has been sold back to founder Dave Portnoy, and the brand will no longer be attached to a sports betting app or betting site. This means Penn will likely be asking Arizona regulators to accept its plan to rebrand their app as ESPN Bet. Football fans may be able to bet with that sportsbook as soon as Thanksgiving, according to statements from PENN.

Racing fans in the state have enjoyed the partnership between NASCAR and Barstool Sportsbook. Whether PENN will transfer that deal to the new ESPN Bet app remains to be seen.

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Dan Holmes

Dan Holmes writes about sports betting, sports media, and sports betting legislative matters. He's the author of three books, and previously reported for Major League Baseball, as well as the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

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