Fanatics Sportsbook Inching Closer To Pennsylvania Launch

Written By Corey Sharp on August 31, 2023 - Last Updated on June 3, 2024
Fanatics is nearing its PA online sportsbook launch after receiving approval to take control of PointsBet's interests from the PGCB.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) approved the change of control from PointsBet to Fanatics Sportsbook during its monthly meeting last week. That means Fanatics is just one more step away from launching a Pennsylvania online sportsbook.

Fanatics has unparalleled brand recognition in the sports merchandise industry. It’ll be interesting to see if that translates over to gaming.

The Fanatics app has a lot of interesting features, which could help it compete against the likes of market leaders FanDuel and DraftKings.

Fanatics next in line as newest PA online sportsbook

The Pennsylvania sports betting landscape has stayed quiet for the last few years. Only three new sportsbooks have debuted since December 2020. They include:

  • BetMGM: December 2020
  • Betway: June 2021
  • PointsBet: February 2022

Fanatics entering the Pennsylvania market makes it a new sportsbook, however, the amount of operators won’t change. Fanatics is essentially replacing PointsBet.

The sports merchandise company is now one more step away from a launch. PGCB Deputy Director of Communications, Richard McGarvey, told PlayPennsylvania:

“At last week’s PBCB meeting, Fanatics’ petition for Transfer of Interest was approved. Fanatics can now move forward in Pennsylvania with developing iGaming and sports wagering sites. Those sites would need to be checked for regulatory compliance and a test period would need to be conducted.”

McGarvey confirmed that if all testing goes well, Fanatics is able to launch at its convenience.

The two sides completed the transaction earlier this week after PointsBet shareholders voted on the payout plan.

How to use FanCash through Fanatics Sportsbook PA

Fanatics has some features that could create serious competition to FanDuel and DraftKings. With a customer base of 95 million people, Fanatics is offering FanCash after every bet that is placed, no matter the result:

  • Straight bet: Up to 1% of the amount bet
  • Parlay bet: Up to 3% of the amount bet
  • Same-game parlay: Up to 5% of the amount bet

FanCash can be redeemed in multiple ways. In a demo conducted to PlayPennsylvania, Fanatics Chief Product Offer, Scott McClintic, said:

“As soon as the bet settles, you get credited with that FanCash. You can use that on or you can convert it to a bonus bet on our app.”

McClintic also said that FanCash could be redeemable as odds boost and profit boost tokens in the future.

For Fanatics customers that already have FanCash in their apparel account, it will soon be linked to the sportsbook through FanID. McClintic said it should be set up over the next couple of months and work as a two-way street process.

Fanatics is expected to be one of the quickest sportsbooks in the market. McClinitic boasted about the speed of the platform and the registration process for new players.

Fanatics’ future in the Pennsylvania sports betting market

The PA sports betting landscape is about to undergo some massive changes. In addition to Fanatics’ near launch, ESPN Bet is also set to launch in November, replacing Barstool Sportsbook.

It’ll take some time for Fanatics to get its feet wet in the Pennsylvania market. Initially, it will most likely be in competition with the second tier of sportsbooks. Those include:

  • BetMGM Sportsbook
  • BetRivers Sportsbook
  • PlaySugarHouse Sportsbook
  • betPARX Sportsbook

Both Fanatics and ESPN Bet are expected to be in that mix. Competing with FanDuel and DraftKings is a daunting task for any new operator.

FanDuel and DraftKings make up 61% of lifetime handle in Pennsylvania. FanDuel leads the state in handle percentage, generating 38% of lifetime handle.

Depending on how good Fanatics’ product is, along with the FanCash promotions, it has more of a chance than most to compete with the sports betting giants.

Fanatics has Pennsylvania online casino options

As McGarvey alluded to in his quote, Fanatics also has the proper licensure to operate its own PA online casino.

Fanatics can do one of two things:

  • Continue to operate PointsBet Casino as is
  • Rebrand PointsBet into Fanatics Casino

The promotional capabilities Fanatics has would lead you to believe a Fanatics-branded casino is coming soon. However, Fanatics officials did not respond to PlayPennsylvania’s request on future online casino plans.

Fanatics launching its own online casino brand could help Pennsylvania’s market grow even more. We will provide updates on anything Fanatics related as it becomes available.

Photo by Fanatics
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Written by
Corey Sharp

Corey Sharp is the Lead Writer at PlayPennsylvania bringing you comprehensive coverage of sports betting and gambling in Pennsylvania. Corey is a 4-for-4 Philly sports fan and previously worked as a writer and editor for the Philadelphia Inquirer and NBC Sports Philadelphia.

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