Online Sports Betting Launching in North Carolina Ahead of March Madness

North Carolina sports bettors have eagerly anticipated the launch of online sportsbooks, and now they have a date to look forward to. The North Carolina State Lottery Commission has announced that online sportsbooks will start accepting bets on Monday, March 11 at noon EST. This launch date is strategically placed just before the commencement of the 2024 NCAA March Madness college basketball tournament, allowing sports fans to capitalize on the excitement of this major sporting event.

The commission revealed that eight sportsbooks, including big names like DraftKings, FanDuel, and BetMGM, are expected to debut on this significant day. This development follows the approval of commercial sports betting in North Carolina by lawmakers last year. In addition to online betting, sports betting at professional sports stadiums and venues has also been given the green light. Furthermore, the state’s two tribes will have the opportunity to pursue online sportsbook permits.

The introduction of commercial sports betting in North Carolina marks a major expansion from the previous retail wagering at tribal casinos. This expansion is expected to bring significant financial benefits to the state, with each sportsbook license costing $1 million every five years and the state receiving 18% of gross revenue from each book. Additionally, the sports betting taxes will provide annual funding of $300,000 to thirteen universities and colleges in the state.

One of the upcoming players in the North Carolina sports betting market, Underdog Sports, has confirmed a partnership with McConnell Golf to qualify its sportsbook application. Other partners in the North Carolina sports betting landscape include Bet365 paired with the Spectrum Center/NBA Charlotte Hornets, BetMGM with Charlotte Motor Speedway, and Fanatics with PNC Arena/NHL Carolina Hurricanes, among others.

The pending launch of online sports betting has been met with enthusiasm by industry stakeholders, with Scott Ward, vice president of the Sports Betting Alliance, expressing gratitude to legislators, education and community stakeholders, and fans for their efforts. The anticipated launch of online sportsbooks is poised to bring a new era of excitement and opportunity to sports fans in North Carolina.

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