Bengals, FanDuel, Fanatics Apply for Ohio Sports Betting Licenses as Deadline Nears

  • The OCCC’s final license application window opens July 15 and closes a month later
  • After compliance, employee, and equipment checks, the market launches Jan 1, 2023
  • The Bengals have applied for a Type A online sports gaming proprietor license
  • FanDuel and Fanatics applied for online licenses, the latter also applying for retail


Bengals stadium
The Bengals could offer online sports betting at the Paul Brown Stadium (pictured) from January 1, 2023, after joining FanDuel and Fanatics in applying for an Ohio sports betting license. [Image:]

Final window for applications

Ohio’s second and final window for issuing digital and retail sports betting licenses opens this week, prompting the Cincinnati Bengals, FanDuel, and Fanatics all to get their license applications off early.

According to the Ohio Casino Control Commission’s (OCCC) sports gaming license list, the Bengals and the two US sports firms all applied for their permits on July 8.

second window for applications opens on July 15

The OCCC’s second window for applications opens on July 15 and closes on August 15. From then, Ohio officials will go through compliance, employee and equipment checks ahead of the market going live January 1, 2023.

The OCCC states it gives no guarantees it will consider “any application received after the deadline” in time for the launch of the state’s sports betting market.

Six online betting applicants

According to the OCCC’s website, the Cincinnati Bengals have applied for a Type A sports gaming online proprietor license. If approved, the Bengals will need to appoint two online sports betting operators from the list of approved licensees.

The Bengals, however, chose not to apply for a Type B retail sports betting license. The NFL season is ending when Ohio sports betting launches, so the Bengals may hold off on opening a retail sportsbook until the 2023 season.

Online operators who have already applied for Ohio betting licenses include BetMGM, PointsBet, Crown Ohio Gaming (DraftKings), and Penn Sports Interactive (Barstool Sportsbook). FanDuel and Fanatics have now joined the party too.

Partnerships, new faces

If FanDuel, Fanatics, and the other applicants gain approval, they can operate an online sportsbook on behalf of an Ohio-based pro sports franchise, casino, or other entity with a “proprietor” license for mobile wagering. These partnerships are yet to be announced.

Sports merchandise firm Fanatics is something of a misfit in terms of its fellow Ohio license applicants. The operator is yet to debut an online sportsbook anywhere.

If recent reports are to be believed, Fanatics is serious about the sportsbook business. The operator is in talks to acquire Europe-based sports wagering giant Tipico. Due to a conflict of interest between betting companies and sports leagues, the CEO of Fanatics, Michael Rubin, has also announced he’s selling his stake in the company that owns the Philadelphia 76ers and the New Jersey Devils.

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