More Than 50 Applications Received for First Colorado Sports Betting Licenses

  • State's sports betting regulations were finalized on January 16
  • Gaming commission plans to initially issue 33 sports betting licenses
  • License approvals to begin in February, first sportsbooks legally open from May 1
  • Names of applicants to date have not been disclosed
Colorado welcome sign
More than 50 contenders have submitted their application for a Colorado sports betting license since November 2019. [Image:]

A lot of interest generated

More than 50 applicants have registered their interest in obtaining a sports betting license in Colorado, with the state’s sports betting regulations finalized on January 16.

sportsbooks to start preparing for a potential launch in May

Thursday’s final approval paves the way for an accelerated application process, which opened in November 2019. The approval of licenses is set to begin in February and will allow sportsbooks to start preparing for a potential launch in May.

The Colorado Limited Gambling Control Commission aims to issue as many as 33 licenses for both online and retail sportsbooks.

A variety of applicants to date

According to Dan Hartman, director of the Department of Revenue’s Gaming Enforcement Division, casinos that are currently in operation are behind 28 of the applications.

Another ten submissions came from operators seeking to open a retail sportsbook, with the remaining 13 applicants looking to launch an online offering. The names of the various contenders have not been disclosed.

Legal sports betting can officially begin in Colorado on May 1, 2020. 

Licensing requirements

An application deposit requirement is in place for businesses applying for sports betting licenses of $10,000. 

The state gaming commission can grant temporary permits to operators while they wait for permanent authorization. The maximum license fee that can be charged has been set at $125,000. Licenses will be valid for two years.

The road to legalization

In the November 2019 elections, Proposition DD received voters’ support by a slim margin to allow legalized sports betting in Colorado. This will see operators paying a tax rate of 10% on sports betting revenues. 

The majority of tax money will go towards improving the water infrastructure in the state. Once the market matures, the state government is hoping to receive about $29m worth of sports betting taxes each year.

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