On Tuesday, December 13, Massachusetts gaming regulator granted a digital sports betting license to Wynn Resorts Las Vegas-based subsidiary, WynnBET, making it the state’s first legal digital sports betting operator.

Category 3 license:

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission voted unanimously to approve the company’s application after a nearly seven-hour meeting.

The permit is for a Category 3 license, meaning the application is related to WynnBET’s intention to operate a mobile-betting platform from March 2023, when online betting is predicted to debut in the state.

In this regard, Jennifer Roberts, Vice President and General Counsel at WynnBET, said: “Madam Chair and members of the commission, were honored by this outcome today and we look forward to being a collaborative partner with the Commission going forward.”

One step ahead of the competition:

After the passage of An Act Regulating Sports Wagering, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission’s main duty was to create regulations to guide the commonwealth’s freshly legalized sports betting industry.

Fifteen sports betting operators applied for a Massachusetts license in November and were subject to lengthy hearings. However, the regulator only approved Encore Boston Harbor’s application, making it the state’s first legal sports wagering operator.

With this approval, Encore and the Massachusetts two other casinos were also allowed to have players bet on both professionals and college sports and were allowed to apply for a mobile betting license in the future, which WynnBET instead of Encore did, as both are subsidiaries of Wynn Resorts.

The result of this is that WynnBET will partner with Encore in Massachusetts.

Conditions for obtaining a license:

Although WynnBET was granted a license, there were some conditions for it from the regulator.

Regulatory Commissioner Jordan Maynard expressed concern that the Massachusetts Gaming Commission did not receive enough information about WynnBET’s employment diversity and goals, a necessary qualification for a license under the new law.

In connection with this, Mr. Maynard said: “We’ve been spoiled by looking at other applications, where we’ve seen (diversity) percentages. It’s not really that I want to look at every vendor, I want to see percentages and the only way I can understand how many is if I know what the universe looks like, that’s how ratios work.”

As a result, the Category 3 license granted to WynnBET contains a clause requiring the company to provide the regulator with the necessary, missing information before they can begin operations.

In this regard, in a press release, the regulator said: “Commissioners put conditions on the awarding of this license, including WynnBET providing the MGC with information on the company’s current vendor diversity statistics and establishing goals on diversity spend in advance of operating sports wagering in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.”