ADOG previously opened an application window with the potential to license two professional sports franchises and one tribe. ADOG did not release the list of applicants or indicate if there were additional applicants that failed to meet the qualification standard.
Bet365 must launch its platform within 180 days, and according to the ADOG, can go live after handling administrative details and is “approved by the Department.”
Early on in the process, it appeared that the United Soccer League’s Phoenix Rising FC would apply, though it failed to meet the qualifying standard in the first round of applications in 2021. The team would have been required to pay a second $100,000 application fee this time around, and sources told Sports Handle that the team did not apply.
When Arizona lawmakers legalized event wagering two years ago, they capped the number of licenses at 20, allotting 10 each to professional sports franchises and tribes. The practical result of that decision is that ADOG has too many professional sports franchise licenses and not enough tribal licenses. To date, there are eight licensed pro franchises, two pro franchise licenses available, and so far, no more entities that qualify.
At its height, there were 18 platforms available in Arizona. That number dropped to 16, but when bet365 goes live, the state’s bettors will have 17 platforms they can use.
One more tribal license coming
On the tribal side, there are 10 licenses for more than 15 gaming tribes in the state. All 10 were spoken for in the first round of licensing, but two have since become available.
Fubo Sportsbook, which was partnered with the Ak-Chins, shuttered last October.
A second tribal license has become available because WynnBET announced that it would be unwinding operations in eight states, including Arizona. WynnBET was partnered with the San Carlos Apache Tribe. ADOG previously said it had no comment on how or when it would handle the license WynnBET being vacated.
Fanatics Sportsbook closes the first phase of a deal to acquire PointsBet’s U.S. business Thursday, and if it seeks access in Arizona, it appears that the only current avenue will be through a tribal license following WynnBET’s exit. Fanatics declined to comment on future plans in the state.
Arizona will be the sixth market for bet365, which is currently live in Colorado, Iowa, New Jersey, Ohio, and Virginia. The company did not immediately respond to inquiries about when it might launch in Arizona.