Posted on: December 12, 2023, 11:33h.
Last updated on: December 12, 2023, 11:56h.
The Fanatics Sportsbook went live in-person and online in Connecticut on Tuesday, less than two weeks after the sports betting operator struck a deal for market entry.
Fanatics Betting and Gaming is a subsidiary of Fanatics Holdings, Inc. Earlier this month, the Connecticut Lottery Corporation (CLC) chose Fanatics as its new sports betting partner after Rush Street Interactive folded on the agreement in March.
A Fanatics spokesperson told Casino.org that Tuesday’s debut is a soft launch. Only the first 2,000 customers who download the Fanatics Sportsbook app in Connecticut and register an account will be accepted. Assuming there are no technical or regulatory glitches, the online sportsbook will open to more bettors on Monday, December 18.
Fanatics is additionally now the retail sportsbook partner of the CLC and is taking bets in person at 10 locations across the state, including at the XL Center in Hartford. Fanatics Sportsbooks are also located in Shelton, Stamford, Windsor Locks, Manchester, New Haven, New Britain, Milford, and Waterbury. Fanatics is working to open a sportsbook in Bridgeport at Total Mortgage Arena.
Connecticut marks the ninth state entry for the Fanatics Sportsbook.
Connecticut expanded gaming in 2021 when Gov. Ned Lamont (D) reworked the state’s two Class III gaming compacts with its tribal partners. The revenue-sharing arrangements were amended to allow the Mohegan Tribe and Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation, which respectively own and operate Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods, to conduct iGaming and both retail and online sports betting.
In exchange for the expanded gaming, the tribes agreed to partially cede control of its gaming monopoly by allowing the Connecticut Lottery to venture into sports betting. The CLC can operate online and retail sports betting, but not online slot machines and table games, as the tribes can.
The CLC picked Rush Street Interactive as its sportsbook partner in August 2021. The interactive gaming unit of Chicago-based Rush Street Gaming pledged to direct at least $170 million to the Connecticut Lottery during the 10-year agreement.
Rush greatly over-projected the market and fell far short of coming anywhere near its $17 million a year tax pledge. Per revenue reports from the Connecticut State Department of Consumer Protection, Rush Street’s SugarHouse Sportsbook has contributed roughly an average of $300K a month to the state from its online and retail wagering operations.
Rush terminated its CLC agreement, and though a separation fee is presumed, the amount wasn’t publicly disclosed. Fanatics’ agreement with the CLC also has not been made available.
Connecticut taxes sports betting revenue at 13.75%.
Fanatics in Connecticut is going up against two industry leaders in DraftKings and FanDuel. Mohegan is partnered with FanDuel and Foxwoods with DraftKings for their iGaming and sports betting operations.
FanDuel is the state sports betting leader. In October, FanDuel’s 13.75% tax on its online sportsbook win amounted to a little more than $1 million. DraftKings paid the state more than $866K. The Connecticut Lottery’s online sportsbook tax totaled $152,600.
Fanatics CEO Michael Rubin isn’t shunning away from the DraftKings and FanDuel-dominated market. The billionaire says it’s his mission to make Fanatics one of the largest sportsbooks in the country.