Gambling titan DraftKings says it is ready for Saturday's debut of mobile New York sports betting, which was sprung in a surprise announcement Thursday.
DraftKings, a sports betting behemoth, seeks first-time New York customers for its sports app.
DraftKings will give new customers $100 in free bets instantly when they sign up to DraftKings Sportsbook. No deposit is required and this offer is available only to customers who sign up for a DraftKings account in New York.
This promo ends when DraftKings goes live Saturday and the free bet must be used within seven days. You can find the DraftKings Sportsbook offer here.
"Growing up in New York and having spent the last 30-plus years in Las Vegas, I am thrilled that my worlds are finally set to collide,” said Johnny Avello, a native of Poughkeepsie and the director of race and sportsbook operations at DraftKings. “Millions of New Yorkers will soon discover what we believe makes our DraftKings Sportsbook the very best in customer service and real-money gaming and entertainment.”
DraftKings Approved by State
DraftKings was one of four operators deemed ready to begin operations by the New York State Gaming Commission (NYSGC). The others are Rush Street Internationa (parent company of BetRivers), FanDuel and Caesars.
Legislators were hoping mobile betting would be in operation for the NFL Playoffs, which start Jan. 15, and certainly before the Feb. 13 Super Bowl.
The start this Saturday exceeds expectations.
DraftKings Reigns in Many States
DraftKings enters its largest market to date since launching in 2012.
The Empire State joins the vast DraftKings live mobile and/or retail betting operations already in place in Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
Also, DraftKings is one of four sports betting companies that operates a retail sportsbook in upstate New York, at Del Lago Casino & Resort in Waterloo.
Know What’s a Key Market? New York, New York
The wait for NY sports betting apps is almost over in the Empire State, widely considered to be the crown jewel in mobile sports betting.
With a population of 19.3 million, New York ranks fourth among U.S. states. However, No. 1 California (39.6 million) and No. 2 Texas (29.7 million) do not have sports betting and will not until 2023 at the earliest.
Florida, ranked No. 3 in total population (21.9 million), has been tangled in legal challenges after previously having only one sportsbook run by the Seminole Tribe (Hard Rock Sportsbook). Currently, there is no betting at all in the state of Florida.
New York's neighboring states, such as New Jersey, Pennsylvania and even Connecticut, have reaped the benefits of New York not having mobile sports wagering.
It has been estimated as much as 25 percent of New Jersey’s record-shattering handle of $1.3 billion for October comes thanks to New York bettors.
An October study by GeoComply, a geolocation security company, estimated that 38% of Connecticut’s wagering had originated from the southwestern corner of the state along the I-95 corridor.
“We’ve learned from the New Jersey experience that New Yorkers are clearly motivated to travel locally to bet on sites where proper consumer protections have been put in place that safeguard the integrity of their wager,” said Chad Kornett, vice president of Global Government Relations for GeoComply. "Connecticut looks to be quickly following a similar pattern.”