Parx Casino Double Dips With Two PA Sports Betting Applications

Written By Eric Ramsey on August 27, 2018
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Pennsylvania has another application for sports betting. Two more applications, actually.

Friday afternoon, Parx owner Greenwood Gaming & Entertainment (GGE) filed its paperwork with the PA Gaming Control Board. The group is requesting approval to offer sports betting through both its flagship casino and the South Philadelphia Turf Club.

GGE was also the first operator to file for a PA interactive gaming license in July.

Parx owner applies for PA sports betting

The pair of applications were both filed Friday with the PGCB.

The first is the primary application for GGE itself, seeking approval for all forms of PA sports betting under the Parx license. That includes retail operations as well as online and mobile platforms.

Operators must submit their applications 90 days before they intend to launch, so GGE is looking at the tail end of November at the earliest. In its filing, though, the group asks for its license ASAP:

GGE respectfully urges the Board to review this Petition and grant its Certificate expeditiously so as to enable GGE to commence sports wagering in a timeframe that enables it to capture as much of the popular fall sports season and events as possible.

Parx has a partnership with GAN which figures to cover its sports betting operations across all channels. The GGE application also reveals an alliance with Sports Information Services Limited, a subsidiary of Kambi.

The public portions of the application don’t include plans for a brick-and-mortar sportsbook at Parx, but that would be a surprising omission. During the GAN announcement, the group expressed clear intentions to offer on-property sports betting under a shared ‘Parx Account.’ The two companies are also partnered for PA online gambling.

Regardless, GGE definitely wants to open a sportsbook at its other property in the heart of the Philadelphia sports district.

South Philadelphia Turf Club wants a sportsbook

The 2017 Gaming Act allows existing PA horse racing tracks to offer sports betting if they demonstrate suitability. One such track is the South Philadelphia Turf Club.

The property could not be in a better spot for sports fans, located within the stadium complex that hosts Philly’s professional teams. Keystone Turf Club operates pari-mutuel horse betting operations for the 27,000-square-foot venue, which opened in 1994.

KTC is seeking approval to renovate the Turf Club to include on-site sports betting. Under state law, both the PGCB and the State Horse Racing Commission must sign off on the proposal. Application for the non-primary location does not carry an additional fee.

GGE requests that the Turf Club petition be considered “in a timely fashion” so that sports betting can commence at both properties simultaneously.

Who else will offer PA sports betting?

GGE is the second casino operator to apply for PA sports betting. Penn National Gaming filed its application with the PGCB a week prior.

Penn owns both Hollywood Casino and The Meadows, and it will enter the sports betting industry under a management partnership with William Hill US. The duo expects to open their retail sportsbook at Hollywood “later this fall.”

That’s about it so far.

Mount Airy recently announced a partnership with The Stars Group, but it has yet to submit an application. Apart from that, none of the other casino operators have partnerships in place or applications on file.

We don’t even have the complete picture for GGE yet. Some of the details redacted from the public application include:

  • The number of new hires needed for sports betting
  • Projected tax payments
  • Security and surveillance details
  • Market strategies

The PCGB will hold its next scheduled meeting on Sept. 12, so that’s the very earliest it would issue any licenses. Penn indicated it could be ready to start taking bets on Sept. 30 if approved, but that seems ambitious, too. Both of those dates represent the absolute best-case scenarios.

PA sports betting licenses cost $10 million apiece, and the state will tax revenue at an effective rate of 36 percent.

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Eric Ramsey

Eric is a gambling data and policy analyst for Catena Media sites, including PlayPennsylvania. In the lead-up and early years of legal sports betting expansion in the U.S., he was a reporter and writer covering poker, sports betting and DFS. Eric comes from a poker background, formerly on staff at PokerNews and the World Poker Tour.

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