January 1, 2023 will see the launch of sports gaming in Ohio. The Casino Control Commission is diligently working to implement what will be the most expansive launch of the ability to bet on sporting events in any state thus far.
For those unfamiliar with how Ohio’s sports gaming setup will work, sports bettors in Ohio will have the following options available to them:
Up to 25 Type A proprietors who, depending on the type of business they operate, can license either one or two mobile management services providers to offer mobile apps for sports betting. This means Ohio could see up to 46 mobile operators in the state (although the number is more likely going to be closer to 30);
Up to 40 Type B retail (bricks and mortar) proprietors who can open in-person locations in counties with a population of greater than 100,000 Ohioans, and;
Type C retail kiosks located in businesses with certain types of D liquor permits who operate lottery games current. As of today, over 1,200 for-profits have applied for these licenses.
There are some nuances with the various licenses as well. Type C kiosks will only have certain types of bets available to those using them and will have caps on the amount of money bet by customers per week. Type B retail facilities will also have caps on the amount of cash that can be bet anonymously by bettors. While casinos, racinos, professional sports teams and professional sports organizations are given preference in their applications for Type A and B licenses, there are some licenses (four Type A and 19 Type B) that are not “tethered” and are available to Ohio businesses meeting the statutory criteria for the licenses. Finally, for those proprietors who are permitted to contract with more than one mobile provider, the second provider will pay millions more in license fees for the first five years of operation than those providers who are considered the first provider with a proprietor.
Dan Dodd has represented sports gaming clients since 2019 and continues to represent clients through the licensing process and regulatory process. Dan was instrumental in the development of Ohio’s sports gaming law. Our clients sought a low tax rate (10% is Ohio’s rate, among the lowest nationally), plentiful opportunities to enter the market (46 possible providers is one of the highest numbers nationally), and a limit on overly burdensome regulations. At least one analyst has identified Ohio’s sports betting legislation as the best sports gaming setup in the nation, something Dan and others who worked on the bill take great pride in as we move closer to the universal start date of January 1st, 2023.