FanDuel is taking over as the sole sports betting operator in Washington DC

US Capitol Building

FanDuel will replace GambetDC as the only district-wide online sportsbook in Washington DC. [Image:]

time for a change

The Washington DC Office of Lottery and Gaming (OLG) has announced that FanDuel will replace GambetDC as the sole district-wide sports betting platform. The transition announced Saturday will occur sometime in the spring. FanDuel will gradually take over the existing GamBetDC betting kiosks in-store.

already controls about 50% of the adjacent markets in Virginia and Maryland

Intralot, the Greece-based company that handles OLG’s lottery and sports betting operations, has selected FanDuel as a new subcontractor for the region’s struggling sports betting sector. The operator already controls approximately 50% of the adjacent markets in Virginia and Maryland and, as of June 2022, also has a retail sportsbook at DC United’s Audi Field.

Restructuring of the agreement

The new agreement with FanDuel requires Intralot to pay a $5 million fee to the district in the current fiscal year. The OLG also no longer has to cover the sports betting platform’s annual operating costs, which range between $2 million and $4 million each year. FanDuel is responsible for all marketing, promotions and payment processing.

Retail sports betting is open in and around the three professional sports venues in Washington DC. Operators can also offer mobile sports betting within three kilometers of the locations.

Regarding the acquisition of FanDuel, OLG Executive Director Frank Suarez said it will “ensure the district maximizes tax revenues under its existing contracts this year while delivering a best-in-class experience.”

A lot of questions

The original decision to award Intralot a five-year, $215 million contract to create the district’s sports betting platform without going through a competitive bidding process was controversial. GambetDC has generated only a fraction of the $20 million in annual tax revenue that was expected when lawmakers legalized the activity in 2019. Bettors complained about a number of issues including uncompetitive odds, substandard technology and poor customer support.

The GambetDC platform, launched in May 2020, will no longer be operational following the transition; The schedule for withdrawal of funds by checking account holders is yet to be determined.

In January, Intralot was ordered to find an established private sports betting operator as a subcontractor. Those responsible at the Higher Regional Court assumed that this procedure would be quicker than initiating a completely new bidding process. They also believe an open sector would hurt retail companies, which have seen a surge in business since the introduction of betting kiosks. OLG’s contract with Intralot expires this summer and it is unclear whether those responsible want to extend their contract.


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