Massachusetts looks to external assistance in sports betting rollout
Bay State officials recruit external consultants RSM US and Gaming Labs International as push to January launch gathers speed
Officials from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) have confirmed the recruitment of two external companies as the state looks to hit its January deadline for the launch of sports betting.
It has been revealed that US-based management consultancy company RSM US has been recruited to help the MGC’s Investigations and Enforcement Bureau (IEB), with particular emphasis on background checking of prospective sportsbook license applicants.
To further augment this, the IEB has recruited a group of former law enforcement officials, some of whom previously worked on the Massachusetts State Police Gaming Enforcement Unit to conduct suitability reviews of applicants.
In addition to these twin hires at the IEB, the MGC has also recruited Gaming Labs International (GLI) to assist with the drafting of internal control regulations, technical and testing standards.
At a meeting taking place late last week, MGC executive director Karen Wells confirmed the additions but asserted the benefits of hiring externally to augment the MGC’s existing departments.
“That is going to be huge for our implementation timeline,” Wells explained.
“It’s a great win for the MGC to get them on board and have that set to go. I know the team is really excited to have this kind of level of help and this level of professionalism.
“As you know, we all have our day jobs, we still run an agency here. So bringing in that assistance is critical to us with the timeline,” she added.
Earlier this month, the MGC officials stated their commitment to what they dubbed the “most aggressive” launch timeline, with retail sports betting set to launch in late January 2023, followed by an online launch in late February 2023.
The Massachusetts tax rate for land-based and online sportsbooks is set at 15% and 20%, respectively, with a license fee costing $5m for a five-year period.
More than 40 operators indicated their interest in obtaining a Massachusetts license when the state conducted a notice of intent solicitation exercise last month.
Included in this list is 888, DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, Penn Entertainment, PointsBet, Hard Rock Digital and bet365.