Bet365: Across the pond

The British are coming! The British are coming again! And this time New Jersey is the landing spot. The location should be no surprise. New Jersey, and more specifically Atlantic City, have long been a fierce competitor to the undisputed champion of gambling, Las Vegas. Since sports betting was legalised in the United States in the May of 2018, Atlantic City has been the main point of focus.

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The “Vegas of the East” already has a number of top quality sportsbooks going into the double digits, and they are about to add another. The prominent British gambling company Bet365 has soft launched its first online gambling site in the United States. The company will be the first from Britain to set up shop in Atlantic City since William Hill started accepting bets in 2018. 

This deal has been brewing for awhile. The company first signed a deal with Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City in July 2018. Although the details of the partnership were unclear at the time, it is now understood that Bet365 will run its own platform using Hard Rock as the licensed, land-based casino partner needed to offer sports betting in the state. 

This was the third online gambling platform to sign with this Hard Rock Casino location. The first being an online gaming site plus sportsbook under the Hard Rock name powered by the Gaming Innovation Group. This was launched in January and is currently operating in the state. The second is a sportsbook under the Unibet brand. The Kindred Group will be running operations for the sportsbook. Although the site has not fully launched, its online casino is up and running.  

Breaking into the Atlantic City sports betting market will not be simple. New Jersey made the push for legal sports betting and rightfully owns what is close to being the country’s biggest market for it. A number of competitive sports betting companies are already operating in the city including DraftKings, FanDuel, BetAmerica, playMGM and more.

However, it would not be that surprising to see the company have success in the United States as  other European online gambling sites William Hill and Betfair have. Bet365 is already available in Canada and Mexico, as well as a long list of European and Oceania countries. The company is also looking towards South American market and is close to signing a deal with a gambling operator in Argentina.  

With the opening in New Jersey, it will finally move one of the biggest sports betting markets from a restricted to accepted status. Giving the companies notoriety and long-standing customer trust, it would not be hard to imagine the sportsbook becoming a must-play site for Americans. The global reach combined with its experience immediately make it a strong competitor. It is also likely that they will not stop in just one state. 

With a new 19,000 square ft office opened in Marlton, New Jersey, it seems that Bet365 has concrete plans that include more than The Garden State. The office is about 50 miles from Atlantic City and will help to oversee operations for the state. However, the office will likely also be used in the company’s expansion efforts. 

The company already has a deal in place with Empire Resorts in New York. This deal will pave the way for Resorts to launch both a retail sportsbook and an online sports betting platform. Bet365 has also bought $50m worth of shares in Empire Resorts. The move for mobile sports betting in New York makes sense due to both its success in New Jersey as well as the remoteness of the four casinos in upstate New York. 

Bet365 has been accepting sports bets since the first launch in 2001. Since then, the company has become one of the world’s largest online gambling platforms. The founder, Denise Coates, is still the current owner of the company along with family members Peter and John Coates. The former being the current chairman of the Stoke City Football Club. 

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Today, the company has more than 35 million customers around the globe and employs approximately 4,300 people. A very successful brand, Denise Coates is now recognised as the best paid female executive in the world with Forbes estimating her worth at $4.6 billion. The site plans to be fully launched by the start of football season.