PointsBet sportsbook and online casino received licensing approval from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board at its monthly meeting on Jan 19. When they go live, PointsBet will be the 14th sports betting app in PA and the state’s 18th online casino.
When will PointsBet be available in PA?
Reps gave no indication when the sportsbook and online casino will launch.
If we had to guess, it would be soon. PointsBet likely wants to be up and running by the NFL Conference Championship games or the Super Bowl at the latest.
Path to Pennsylvania
In late July of 2019, Penn National Gaming entered into a multi-year market access agreement with PointsBet and several other sports betting operators. Penn Interactive Ventures manages the sports betting and iGaming portfolio. In March 2021, PointsBet secured sports betting and iGaming market access in Pennsylvania.
As the official, exclusive sports betting partner of NBC Sports, Points Bet is a familiar brand to sports bettors. Philadelphia 76ers legend Allen Iverson appears in a commercial for the sportsbook.
PointsBet USA CEO Johnny Aitken said in a press release:
“We are excited to be inching closer to officially offering PointsBet’s market-leading products to sports fans and bettors in Pennsylvania in partnership with Penn National Gaming. With Pennsylvania ranking among the top five sports betting states in the nation, PointsBet is thrilled to be able to soon establish its presence in this lucrative market. We are appreciative of the support we’ve received from Pennsylvania and the great people at the Gaming Control Board. We ultimately seek to provide customers in Pennsylvania with the best-in-class sports betting and online casino experience.”
PointsBet sportsbook features
PointsBet USA Chief Marketing Officer Kyle Christensen commented:
“We are excited to continue telling the PointsBet story and demonstrate to sports fans and bettors in Pennsylvania exactly what sets the brand apart among the rest.”
So, what sets PointsBet apart from the other PA sports betting apps?
The main feature is right in the name, “points betting.” If your bet wins by one point, you win 1X your bet amount. If your bet wins by 2X, you win 2X your wager. However, if you lose by 1 point, you lose 1x your bet amount, if your team loses by 10 points, you lose 10X times your bet.
Also, you can “request a bet” on the app.
PointsBet Sportsbook new user offer
In New Jersey, the new user offer for the sportsbook is first bets are risk-free up to $2,000. The bets can be split up to four ways. PA sports bettors should be expecting something identical when the app is live here.
PointsBet online casino
The online casino in New Jersey has a small library of games. But most casinos went live in PA with small libraries and eventually built it up over time. PointsBet will be entering a crowded online casino market. Penn National has three online casino brands already in PA which dominate market share (Hollywood Casino, DraftKings, BetMGM, Barstool).
“Always on” live betting
PointsBet acquired trading tech firm Banach Technology for $43 million in March 2021 to help improve their live betting. At the time, Aitken estimated that roughly 50% of bets are currently placed in-game.
Saturday’s NBC broadcast of the NFL Wildcard Playoff game between the Las Vegas Raiders and Cincinnati Bengals, represented a giant leap for live betting. PointsBet said they “successfully broke ground” in becoming the first U.S. sportsbook to give users in-game betting with zero suspensions across the core markets of spread and moneyline as part of a test run during the Wild Card game.
Aitken commented on the “always-on” live betting in a press release:
“When we acquired Banach Technology, it was with a precise focus to build toward an ‘always on’ in-game betting technology experience at PointsBet. That proprietary technology has been developed quicker than we expected since our acquisition. Our customers experienced 100% uptime and no suspensions on in-game spread and moneyline bets, which we believe to be the first ever result of this kind in the U.S. While this test focused on the spread and moneyline markets, it also showed a glimpse into the future of where we can take our technology over time and offer a completely differentiated experience when betting in-play with PointsBet.”
Since phasing in its proprietary “OddsFactory” platform this NFL season it has:
- Reduced the amount of live in-play market suspensions by 40%
- Halved the number of bets rejected by suspensions or price changes
- Increased the number of bets cashed out by 60%
“No one else in the sports betting world…”
Mark Hughes, Group Chief Operating Officer at PointsBet, commented:
“We have watched the integration of our advanced technology with increased uptimes as the NFL season progressed, and wanted the chance for a full test of our capabilities on spread and moneyline markets. Knowing it would offer a bigger handle, we selected Saturday’s playoff game and we went for it. We brought the technology to market faster than we thought we could and created something for our clients that no one else in the sports betting world had accomplished.”
Moving forward, PointsBet plans to refine its live betting technology, expand its offerings, and optimize the customer experience for the 2022 NFL season.