ZenSports Could Bring Peer-To-Peer Sports Betting To Tennessee

Written By Christine Won on March 9, 2023
online app zensports sportsbook peer betting

The KeyStar Corp. has announced it has officially submitted its sports wagering license application for ZenSports, a mobile platform offering “a traditional sports book where customers can bet against the house, as well as a peer-to-peer sports betting marketplace,” in Tennessee.

This means bettors could cast their own peer-to-peer bets with friends and friendly rivals, naming their own odds and terms in the app, pending licensure from the Tennessee Lottery.

“Tennessee is the perfect first state for us to launch ZenSports in,” KeyStar CEO Mark Thomas said. “Tennessee has demonstrated significant technology innovation and is one of the fastest-growing states for sports wagering.”

Thomas, who co-founded ZenSports, was recently named CEO of KeyStar after the company acquired ZenSports in October 2022 in a pivot to betting and esports.

Record-breaking Tennessee sports betting activity

KeyStar is pushing to get Zensports into Tennessee at a great time.

Tennessee sports betting handle hit an all-time high in November 2022. Since the summer, Tennessee sports betting has seen a spike in its betting handle with its nine online sportsbooks, surpassing $400 million in back-to-back months in November to hit a record $439.46 million.

That figure, an 8% increase over October, surpassed the state’s total during even March Madness, typically the one of highest handle months of the year.

Since the state became the first to welcome online-only betting, Tennessee now stands among the top 10 US sports betting markets with over $49M in revenue in December alone. The sportsbooks built upon that success in January 2023, seeing a 25% year-over-year increase in revenue.

Peer-to-peer betting could draw new interest from players to build the market out even further. Unlike with traditional betting, Zensports merely acts as the facilitator in such wagers as opposed to the house. That could appeal to bettors who are uninterested in traditional wagers.

Next steps for Keystar and Tennessee

According to KeyStar’s press release, the company “hopes to be approved for both its traditional sports book and its peer-to-peer wagering features, pursuant to the Tennessee Sports Gaming Act and the Sports Wagering Advisory Council rules.” It’s unclear how soon that could come.

In the first three months of the year, the state may see over $460 million in handle, which would be another record high for Tennessee. While it does not look like Zensports will be a part of potentially reaching that number, a license could lead to a role for the sportsbook in the future.

Photo by PlayUSA
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Christine Won

Christine Won is a freelance industry copywriter who hails from a journalism background. She's covered various beats, including breaking news, business, health, science, government at all levels, and more. When she's not writing, she's reading.

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