SWARC Approves Two More Sports Betting Licenses

SWARC Approves Two More Sports Betting Licenses
Fact Checked by Thomas Leary

Maryland’s Sports Wagering Application Review Commission voted to award two more licenses, one for a mobile operator and the other for a sports wagering facility, at today’s meeting.

While becoming an awardee is an important step in the licensing process in Maryland, each applicant still must return to Maryland Lottery & Gaming for final approvals, with a key component being a controlled demonstration of operations and compliance with required regulations. Once that happens, the fully approved operators can begin taking wagers and join the Maryland sports betting scene.

The businesses that were awarded licenses today were Veterans Services Corporation, doing business as Vital Services Contractors, Inc., which is applying for a mobile sports wagering license, and Whitman Gaming, Inc., which is applying for a retail license.

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Veterans Services Corporation, owned by Emmanuel Bailey, is already licensed in the District of Columbia in association with Intralot for the District’s online sports wagering operation. In Maryland, the company has entered into an agreement with Bee Fee Limited, a U.K.-based remote gaming software company, to provide a mobile sports wagering platform and other services.

Whitman Gaming, owned by Carroll H. Hynson, Jr., hopes to run a retail sportsbook as part of a Sports and Social sports bar and restaurant in North Bethesda. Whitman Gaming will be associated with the owners of Live! Casino & Hotel and by extension, with FanDuel Sportsbook Maryland.

Maryland Market Breakdown

To date, the SWARC has now awarded 16 mobile licenses and five Class B sports wagering facility licenses.

Some sports wagering facilities that were designated in the original sports betting legislation are not required to go through SWARC.

The application process for mobile licenses and competitive retail licenses requires that the Maryland Lottery & Gaming Control Commission find an applicant “qualified” for licensing; then the SWARC “awards” a license, and finally, Lottery & Gaming “issues” a license.

There are nine Maryland sportsbook apps currently taking wagers in the state, with SuperBook being the most recent to launch on April 11.  There are 10  sports wagering facilities doing business in the state.

For the March Maryland revenue report, all of Maryland’s sportsbooks combined for more than $385.9 million in handle and set a single-month record with more than $5.3 million in contributions to the state, with the money mainly going toward education.

In addition to awarding the two licenses, the SWARC also approved diversity plans today for five operators that were previously awarded licenses.  

Those businesses included mobile wagering applicants Crab Sports Maryland, and SBOpco, LLC (Super Book). Diversity plans were also approved for facility locations Kathe P. Hospitality (Michael’s on the South River in Riva, Anne Arundel County);  Canton Gaming, LLC -- Canton (The Greene Turtle Sports Bar & Grille in Canton, Baltimore City), and Canton Gaming, LLC -- Towson (The Greene Turtle Sports Bar & Grille in Towson, Baltimore County).

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A longtime reporter and editor who began writing on casinos and gaming shortly after Atlantic City’s first gambling halls opened, Bill covered the World Series of Poker and wrote a syndicated column on travel to casino destinations for a decade.

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