North Carolina Sports Betting Moves Forward, 7 Operators Apply for Licenses

Jan 04, 2024
North Carolina Sports Betting Moves Forward, 7 Operators Apply for Licenses

It's an exciting time across the country as the New Year has arrived! For bettors in North Carolina, it means they are a little closer to being able to place wagers online. North Carolina sports betting is hoping for a launch near March Madness and seven sportsbooks submitted their applications by December 27. Here are the latest updates for betting in the state.

Seven Sportsbooks Submit Applications for Sports Betting License

The North Carolina Lottery Commission set December 27, 2023, as the deadline for sports betting applications to be submitted. If sportsbooks wanted to go live on launch day, they needed to be applied by then. Seven sportsbooks were able to get their applications in and a few even formed partnerships.

Here's a look at the sportsbooks that applied and their partnerships with an in-state pro sports team or facility.

The state has taken to calling these operators the "Magnificient 7" as the first group to apply for licenses. Each sportsbook can earn approval in a 60-day window. If approved, they can go live on launch day which is yet to be determined.

Pro Sports Teams Available for Partnerships

The state law signed back in June 2023 requires sportsbook operators to form a partnership with a professional team or facility. Without a partnership, a sportsbook cannot have online sports betting. While a few of the sportsbooks have already gotten a head start by forming partnerships with teams like the Carolina Hurricanes and Charlotte Hornets, there are still more teams available in NC.

  • Carolina Panthers (NFL)
  • Charlotte Motor Speedway (NASCAR)
  • FC Charlotte (MLS)
  • North Carolina Courage (NWSL)
  • North Wilkesboro Speedway (NASCAR)

Can More Sportsbooks Apply for Licenses?

Now, what about other sportsbooks that didn't apply by December 27? The state plans to grant up to 9 licenses for online sports betting. That leaves a few spots available for sportsbooks who want to get into the game later. Any sportsbook that applies after the deadline, will not be able to launch when North Carolina goes live. They will have to wait for the approval process to be completed.

Caesars Sportsbook is a top brand that is missing from early applications. The operator applied for a supplier license. This is likely due to the fact that Caesars has two land-based casinos in the state. The sports betting law that was passed allows for casinos to have online sports betting as long as they are already running in the state.

Latest Update on North Carolina Sports Betting Going Live

It's 2024 and North Carolina sports bettors still have the same question. When will sports betting go live in North Carolina? The January 8 launch date was ruled out quickly. It was the first opportunity the state was allowed to go live. Then Super Bowl LVIII was also ruled out by the North Carolina Lottery Commission. The Super Bowl is on February 11.

Governor Roy Cooper did say the commission is optimistic about a potential launch before March Madness. The NCAA basketball tournament is in mid-March. The North Carolina Lottery Commission hasn't set a specific date but has March Madness as an attainable goal.

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