The countdown is on, and work is underway for what is being hailed as the largest simultaneous launch of sports betting in American history when Ohio opens for business on January 1, 2023.
Where can I bet in Ohio?
After Jan. 1, Ohio sports bettors will have options of placing bets on their mobile devices (on which exact sportsbooks, we don’t know yet), in person at casinos, one of the state’s seven racinos, and through a unique partnership with professional sports franchises that will allow the activity at stadiums.
The Cleveland Cavaliers are building a betting lounge along with Fubo Gaming in Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. Bally’s and the Cleveland Browns have a space in the works, and Tipico partnered with the Columbus Crew.
Sports betting is also going to be available at your favorite Ohio dive bar, watering hole, or spot to hear some rock and roll. Anyplace with a Class-D liquor license is eligible to host a sports betting kiosk.
What’s a sports betting kiosk and where will they be in Ohio?
Think of the kiosk as looking like a large-screen phone or mobile device, with the same type of interface as a slot machine. Users will be able to use a touchscreen to log into their account and place bets on the games of the day. There will be a limit on the wagering amount for a single bet at the kiosk ($500).
The pace of the licensing process for kiosk vendors from the Ohio Lottery – up to 20 who can place the kiosks in the businesses – has drawn at least one complaint.
“We are deeply concerned related to the timing of the Ohio Lottery,” said David George, president of the Ohio Fair Gaming Coalition in a WKYC report on the industry.
“We’re watching the Ohio Casino Control Commission move along at a rapid pace, at a very thorough pace related to their constituents in the mobile world and in the Class B licenses.”
George is saying that the Ohio Lottery needs to speed up its processes so that kiosks can be placed in the appropriate establishments in time for the Jan. 1 launch.
Caesars launches Ohio mobile sportsbook app
While who will be approved for an online sportsbook in Ohio is still unknown, Caesars is certainly going to be a candidate. Last week, Caesars announced it was expanding its horse racing mobile app into Florida and Ohio.
This will give Ohio bettors the opportunity at pari-mutuel betting tracks throughout the United States, including Belmont Park, Saratoga, and Santa Anita.
If – and when – Caesars gets approved to launch sports betting in Ohio, the horse racing app and the sports betting app can interconnect.
“The launch of Caesars Racebook is an important milestone as we continue to add wagering opportunities for our customers and livestreaming content for the first time,” said Caesars Digital Senior Vice President and Chief Development Officer Dan Shapiro in the release trumpeting the news.
“We look forward to welcoming new horse racing customers and existing fans onto the platform and to working with NYRA Bets to grow horse racing as we deploy Caesars Racebook with plans to launch in about 30 states across the country.”
Ohio casino May revenue numbers slightly lower
Meanwhile, the Ohio Casino Control Commission and Ohio Lottery said operators brought in $202 million in gambling revenue in May.
This was consistent with May of 2021, when operators reported $209 million. The Jack Thistledown Racino, Jack Cleveland, and MGM Northfield Park casinos all reported slightly less revenue in May of 2022 from the previous May.
But the state remains on pace to set a new record for total revenue for the year. As of May, Ohio has reported $984 million in gambling revenue. Last year, at the same time, the figure was $954. Total revenue in 2021 in the Buckeye State was $2.31 billion.