In 2017, Pennsylvania became the fourth state in the U.S. to approve Online gambling as the latest step in the nation modernizing its sports betting industry. The start of October 2018 saw the latest round of bids submitted for licenses to operate both Online and physical sports betting operations within Pennsylvania. The only publicly traded gaming company in Pennsylvania, Penn National put aside its initial worries about Online gaming to be the first top casino to pay the $10 million fee for a sports betting license in the state.
Penn National is the only Pennsylvania-based company to submit a bid for a sports betting license in the newly opened market within the state. Like many of its rivals, which many believe number thirteen separate companies looking to obtain similar licenses, Penn National is expected to seek the assistance of the U.K.-based bookmaker William Hill to create both its physical sportsbook and Online app.
The bid to purchase a sports betting license and the accompanying investment was announced at a meeting with state gaming officials who were told Penn National is investing in the development of a physical sportsbook at its Hollywood Casino. A linkup with William Hill would seem to be a good choice for Penn National should federal regulations over sports betting be slackened in the coming years. The European bookmaker has already developed its sports betting software for use in the states of New Jersey and Nevada, which should allow the existing templates to be used to develop apps and desktop software for Pennsylvania.
Current federal regulations do not allow betting via Online means to take place across state lines; however, William Hill is already in the process of developing software allowing state lottery providers the chance to take part in the expected sports betting boom destined to take place across the U.S. Penn National is hoping the British sports betting expert will have the ability to create its platforms in a small period of time based on the work already completed in New Jersey and Nevada.
Alongside the $10 million Online sports betting license applied for by Penn National, the overall cost of the redevelopment of the Hollywood Casino site and two satellite casinos is expected to top $57 million. So far, four providers have applied to establish sports betting licenses from the state of Pennsylvania with 13 companies expected to become licensed sports betting companies in the region. The approval process for the four casinos already applying for sports betting licenses will be approved by the end of the second week of October with most expecting to start operating by the end of 2018.