The Colorado Limited Gaming Control Commission (CLGCC) looks to approve more license applications for sportsbooks at its next meeting on Thursday, March 19.
In total, there are 15 applications waiting in the wings for different types of licenses. In fact, three major online sportsbook brands could join Colorado’s market on Thursday.
Potential sportsbooks joining the Colorado market on Thursday
Many are already familiar with the three CO sportsbook operators looking to make a splash once sports betting goes live May 1, even though the CLGCC is ruling on temporary licenses only.
The three operators are PointsBet, FanDuel, and Fox Bet.
Moreover, six casinos have master licenses on the table:
- Golden Gates
- Golden Gulch
- Bronco Billy’s Casino
- Golden Mardi Gras
- Billy’s Casino
- Christmas Casino & Inn by Bronco Billy’s
Colorado readies for May 1 sports betting launch
The moratorium on legal sports betting expires on May 1. This means that approved sports betting operators could potentially start accepting real money wagers on that day.
Just a few weeks ago, the CLGCC had over 50-plus applications to wade through for approvals.
Most importantly, investigators need to complete thorough background checks on potential applicants. The commission also needs to review them during special meetings.
During the last CLGCC meeting, renowned sports betting operator DraftKings received two temporary licenses to open a physical and online sportsbook in The Centennial State. The retail sportsbook will be located within the Golden Mardi Gras Casino in Black Hawk.
The sports betting market is starting to flesh out well before the state of Colorado even accepts its first legal real money sports wager.
How will coronavirus affect Colorado’s gaming industry?
Other states have already begun temporary casino closures. For example, tribal casinos in California and MGM Resorts in Las Vegas announced their plans today to shutter on March 17. These casinos are closing in the interest of public health and employee safety due to concerns over the novel coronavirus.
In addition, most major sporting events like March Madness have been canceled.
With the cancellation of most sports and the possible closure of Colorado casinos, will the coronavirus impact the debut of legalized sports betting? The three Colorado mountain towns of Central City, Cripple Creek and Black Hawk all rely on gaming to boost their economies.
The answer is: possibly. Most casinos and sports betting online operators are viewing the May 1 date as a soft launch date. In fact, there is no guarantee that the CLGCC will approve all the licenses by that date. The goal of most licensees is to be up and running by the time football season starts.