Ohio sportsbooks are still many months away from debuting, but national players in the space are working on partnerships to hit the ground running.
The latest is the Chicago-based Rush Street Interactive (RSI), which has entered into a strategic partnership agreement with Penn National Gaming, which operates Ohio casinos under the Hollywood name in Dayton, Columbus, Toledo and Austintown.
Under the terms of the agreement, RSI will have the ability to offer its BetRivers.com brand online casino and sports betting platform for up to 20 years in Ohio, according to a news release. (In 2020, Penn National entered into a similar Hollywood Casino Ohio arrangement with Unibet.)
The Penn National deal also allows RSI to potentially expand into Maryland and Missouri, subject to license availability — and also Texas, if that state moves forward at some point with online sports betting.
“The addition of Ohio, Maryland and Missouri to our market access portfolio, specifically, builds on RSI’s success in neighboring states and will create enhanced marketing efficiencies for our BetRivers.com brand,” RSI President Richard Schwartz said in the release. “We continue to engage in productive dialogue with industry participants, such as tribal and commercial casinos and other stakeholders, to further our expansion into new states.
“We expect to continue entering into additional market access arrangements in the future, as other opportunities arise.”
Rush Street Live in Other States
Rush Street Interactive currently operates online gaming sites in Arizona, Louisiana, Connecticut, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Virginia and now has market access deals for online gaming in New York, Ohio, Maryland, and Missouri.
RSI launched its first online gaming site in New Jersey in September 2016 and was the first to launch regulated online gaming in Colorado, Illinois, Indiana and Pennsylvania, the release said. Through RushBet.co, the company is also the first U.S.-based gaming operator to launch a legal and regulated online casino and sportsbook in the country of Colombia.
The Ohio Casino Control Commission recently released an updated timeline to launch sports betting in the state.
Ohio Sports Betting PartnershipsThere have been other partnerships announced in Ohio:
- In February 2022, Fubo Gaming secured a deal with the Cleveland Cavaliers to make Fubo Sportsbook an Official Mobile Sports Betting Partner of the NBA franchise.
- In January 2022, Global sportsbook operator Tipico announced a long-term partnership agreement with the Columbus Crew, making Tipico the official and exclusive sports betting partner of the MLS franchise.
- In March 2021, the Cleveland Cavaliers and Betway, a United Kingdom sports betting and online gaming company, announced a new multi-year partnership. It includes a marketing campaign to promote Betway through signs and commercials, as well as a presence on team digital and social channels, according to a news release from the NBA team.
- In June 2021, WynnBET and the Cincinnati Reds announced a corporate deal that targets bettors in Indiana, where online sports betting is already available. WynnBET will have access to official Reds logos for use across its online products, as well as marketing tools to create co-branded promotional offers, according to a news release.
- In September 2020, Unibet entered into the agreement with Penn National Gaming to operate online sports betting and online casino gaming through Penn National's Hollywood Casinos in Ohio.