The demand for sports betting licenses in Colorado may have been more than the state anticipated. The Colorado Limited Gaming Control Commission has set a special license approval meeting to supply them.
The meeting on Thursday, March 5, could grant license applications to several more sportsbook operators. That could put them on track for a May 1 launch.
The details on the special license approval meeting
The meeting, which the commission scheduled to start at 9:15 a.m. MST on Thursday, will be mostly public. Most of the commission members will be participating via telephone, however.
Those in attendance in Golden will get to witness the potential approval of three more master licenses, three operator licenses and two vendor licenses. The operator license applications include a brand that should be very familiar to Coloradans.
DraftKings, which has access to Colorado through a deal with Twin River Entertainment, is seeking approval for vendor licenses that would allow it to offer online and retail sports betting in the state.
There are three casinos seeking master licenses whose cases the commission will consider on Thursday, as well.
- CCSC/Blackhawk Inc. dba Lady Luck Casino Black Hawk
- Isle of Capri Black Hawk LLC dba Isle Casino Hotel Black Hawk
- Ameristar Casino Black Hawk LLC dba Ameristar Casino Black Hawk
The other party seeking an operator license is Score Digital Sports Ventures. That company operates theScore Bet, which also already has an access deal for Colorado.
The two applicants for vendor licenses are Score Media Ventures and Global Payment Systems. The former is the media arm of the same company as Score Digital Sports Ventures while GPS is a payment processing company.
The meeting will adjourn shortly after an opportunity for public comment. While this could be a banner day for DraftKings and those three casinos, the meeting has more meaning beyond the possible approval of those licenses.
What the commission’s actions mean in this case
The commission vowed to do all it can to help operators prepare for a May Day launch. So far, it has kept that promise.
Not only did the state approve its first seven licenses less than two weeks ago, but it also finalized the regulations for sports betting. The fact that commission members are meeting again on such short notice, most of them remotely, is further proof that they are committed to their word.
This should give Coloradans even more confidence that at least some sportsbooks will actually start accepting wagers on May 1. They are barred from doing so until then by a moratorium imposed by Colorado law.
Furthermore, the fact that the state might approve operator and vendor licenses on Thursday enhances the chance that May Day might see the launch of online sportsbooks as well as retail. If DraftKings and Score Digital get green lights, the rest of this month and all of April might be sufficient time to get the products ready to go.
It’s looking more and more like legal sportsbooks will be live in time for the NBA and NHL playoffs. For Avalanche and Nuggets fans who want to place wagers, that’s great news.