Are 3 More Pennsylvania Sportsbooks Just Days Away From Opening?

Written By Martin Derbyshire on November 30, 2018 - Last Updated on January 10, 2024
Pennsylvania will soon add three more operating sportsbooks for legal sports betting in the state.

Three more Pennsylvania sportsbooks have cleared one of the state’s final regulatory hurdles and could launch in just a matter of days.

At its Nov. 28 meeting, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) gave conditional approval of sports wagering operator licenses for two companies that represent the three PA casino sportsbooks. The companies are Rush Street Interactive and Sports Information Services, Limited, otherwise known as Kambi.

Rush Street Interactive is Rush Street Gaming’s online division. Of course, Rush Street Gaming owns both SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia and Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh. Rush Street Interactive also runs the SugarHouse Online Casino & Sportsbook in New Jersey.

Kambi is a sports betting software and data company. It is working with SugarHouse, Rivers, and Parx Casino, just outside Philadelphia, as all three prepare to launch online/mobile and retail sportsbook operations.

Sports wagering operator license approval for the pair puts SugarHouse, Rivers, and Parx on the verge of launching the second, third and fourth sportsbooks in PA.

All that’s left now is PGCB testing and the formality of some final paperwork.

The Sportsbook at Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course became the state’s first legal and regulated sports betting operation when it launched Nov. 17.

It went through PGCB testing and final paperwork in a matter of days. A timeline that gives hope to the idea sportsbooks at SugarHouse, Rivers and Parx could open as soon as the first week of December.

Parx Casino Sportsbook

Parx Casino was the second PA casino to apply for a PA sports betting license and it has long-targeted a December launch for a temporary sportsbook at the casino. It will operate a temporary sportsbook out of its 360 Lounge on the gaming floor. A permanent sportsbook is under construction and should be ready to open in the second quarter of 2019.

Parx is also planning to install 30 self-service betting kiosks throughout the casino floor. Plus, Parx will allow on-site mobile sports betting from the word go. Parx plans to take its mobile sports betting app statewide in early 2019.

It is also looking to launch a sportsbook at its South Philadelphia Turf Club off-track betting parlor. However, the PGCB has put that plan on hold until Parx passes testing and goes live at the casino property.

Sportsbooks at SugarHouse and Rivers

SugarHouse and Rivers have both targeted Dec. 1 for the opening of temporary sportsbooks on the properties. However, Rush Street officials have admitted that isn’t likely to happen. They are now saying they are hoping to launch as soon as possible.

The Rivers plan includes opening a temporary sportsbook on the southern gaming floor. However, its permanent location is under construction in the center of the casino.

SugarHouse plans to open a temporary sportsbook outside its poker room. However, the permanent home is under construction inside its Lucky Red bar.

Construction of both should be done by Spring 2019. Both properties have indicated an interest in launching mobile sports betting apps by that time.

Kambi and PA sports betting

Kambi will have a hand in online/mobile and retail sports betting operations at all three casinos.

Kambi’s Chief Commercial Officer Max Meltzer said he’s looking forward to a bright future in PA:

“We’re delighted to have received our transactional waiver from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board today, which puts us one step closer to launching the Kambi Sportsbook with our partners in the state. I’m confident the players of Pennsylvania will enjoy what Kambi has to offer both on-property and online, particularly through the lens of our fantastic customers, who’ll have the ability to leverage our empowerment tools to differentiate, innovate and create exciting sports betting experiences.”

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Martin Derbyshire

Martin Derbyshire has more than ten years of experience reporting on the poker, online gambling, and land-based casino industries for a variety of publications including Bluff Magazine, PokerNews, and PokerListings. He has traveled extensively, attending tournaments and interviewing major players in the gambling world.

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