Although not the most active, the Montana sports betting industry keeps itself afloat. In fact, in addition to the $46 million wagered in 2021, more developers are expanding into the casino sector.
New casino coming to Montana
An existing Conoco convenience store and gas station will be redeveloping into the Wild Tornado bar and casino. Businessman Jay Doucette purchased the property as O E D, LLC.
City council member Mike Boyett told The Billings Gazette, after two years of creating specific casino zoning requirements,
“This is a good thing. It works for all of us. I don’t think we could have found a better place for a casino,” Boyett said.
Speaking of Montana sports betting
Big Sky Country launched sports betting in March 2020. Although there is mobile sports betting, it can only be accessed through one app, Sports Bet Montana. Furthermore, the app comes by way of the Montana Lottery in partnership with Intralot.
Additionally, bettors must be within the geofenced footprint of a retail betting outlet to use the mobile app. Bettors will limit a maximum bet of $250 at betting kiosks or $1,000 on the website/app.
Speaking with the Daily Inter Lake, Jennifer Mckee, former communications manager of the state lottery, said launching during the pandemic may not have been the best idea.
“We couldn’t have picked a worse time to launch a technology sports product in human history,” McKee said.
“In 2021, we started seeing the kinds of betting behavior that we were hoping to see. We had games to bet on, and we had the sports that Montanans really cared about.”
Through Dec. 27, $46 million was wagered in the state compared to $18 million in 2020. For the year, the state collected $9 million in tax revenue.
Due to the framework of the sports betting bill, authorized retailers receive 6% of all bets placed. In 2021, these properties generated $2.7 million in profits.