Seven is a number that we all the time in the gambling world. Whether or not it is good or bad depends on the game that you are playing, but seven appears to be a lucky number for Caesars in the state of Indiana. The Indiana Gaming Commission made Caesars the seventh Indiana sports betting app to be approved in the Hoosier State and it launched on Tuesday May 19.
This is the fourth state for the Caesars app, which also operates in Nevada, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. Caesars partnered with Scientific Games in July 2018 to help with a state of the art app and that partnership has produced apps in those four states, with Iowa likely the next one that Caesars will add in the not too distant future.
The Caesars app in Indiana runs through the operator’s license at the Horseshoe Hammond property, which is an extremely popular stop for retail sports betting with its proximity to the Chicago metro area. Surely Caesars would have liked to have the mobile app up and running sooner, but things have taken time in terms of state approval and they haven’t been quite as forceful or urgent as other operators.
Nevertheless, the Caesars app is up and running now and will be a popular addition to smartphones across the state.
Timing Is Everything
For being such a world-recognized brand, the timing for Caesars has been something of a mystery. They launched their app in Nevada in 2017 and were right on top of things in New Jersey when PASPA was overturned. They were up and running in NJ by the 2018 NFL season.
Despite a presence with gaming properties in several states, Caesars did not start offering a betting app in a third state until March 2020. That was Pennsylvania. At least the gap is much smaller with Indiana, though sports mostly remain on hold as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to linger.
In fairness to Caesars, mobile sports betting did not start in Indiana until September 2019 and it took time for their licensing to go through. They were given a temporary operating license just before the 2019 NFL and college football seasons, but have now been given full status, which allows for the app release.
April Showers, May Flowers for Sportsbooks?
We’re getting sprinkles of sports in the month of May. Will that lead to a more promising outlook for the sportsbooks? The month of March was cut short when the coronavirus outbreak hit the NBA and continued to spread to other sports and across the country. Losing out on March Madness, the start of baseball season, and the NBA and NHL playoffs has led to an enormous drop in actual and projected revenues across the industry.
April was an extremely quiet month, spared only by the NFL Draft. May, however, has brought UFC, NASCAR, charity golf events, and the return of soccer across the pond. Not to mention a wave of action on the Korean Baseball Organization (KBO) and European table tennis.
The light at the end of the sports betting tunnel finally appears illuminated with governors clearing the way for pro sports to begin and the leagues talking with players union reps and owners to formulate plans for a safe return. Indiana, and the other states with legalized sports betting, are certainly watching the news closely.
Even with less than half of a month of handle in March, the handle dropped nearly 65% from March to April and revenue fell over 71% per the Indiana Gaming Commission.
New Kids on the Block
While the Caesars announcement is the biggest news of the week for Indiana sports betting, theScore Bet and Unibet are two newcomers to the wagering party with temporary licenses. Unibet also now has its license through Horseshoe Hammond and theScore Bet now has its license through Penn National.
Given how long the process took for Caesars to take hold and launch both its retail product and its app, don’t hold your breath for theScore and Unibet to be ready by the upcoming football season. There is a chance, but whatever we get for basketball and hockey in 2020 seems like a more attainable goal.