OLG monopoly on online betting could end

FanDuel warns of terminating D.C. partnership after FY2025 budget moves to expand sports betting market

Reading time 1:18 min

FanDuel president Christian Genetski has warned D.C. City Council Chairman Phil Mendelson that the company may end its partnership with the city to operate its sports betting platform. This warning came in a letter sent before lawmakers approved a 2025 budget that includes provisions to expand the sports betting market in the District.

The new budget introduces a Class C license, allowing sportsbooks to partner with one of the state’s professional sports teams and offer mobile sports betting across the District.

Currently, the Office of Lottery and Gaming (OLG) holds a monopoly on online wagering. As of April, FanDuel is the sole operator offering digital betting throughout the District, while BetMGM and Caesars Sportsbook have retail locations with limited digital betting within an exclusion zone.

Mayor Muriel Bowser still needs to approve the 2025 budget, which faces opposition due to tax implications. If approved, it would open up the city's sports betting market. Both BetMGM and Caesars Sportsbook would then be able to offer their platforms citywide, and new operators could apply for DC sports betting licenses. The proposal also allows for the creation of Type C licenses.

FanDuel has indicated it would terminate its agreement with the OLG. Despite this, FanDuel could still partner with a local sports team and launch its mobile platform under a Class C license. The company already holds a Class A license, allowing it to operate a retail sportsbook at Audi Field.

If FanDuel exits the agreement, the DC Lottery could be left without a partner to operate online and retail sports betting kiosks across the District.

The council initially legalized sports betting in 2019, granting OLG a digital monopoly. OLG partnered with lottery vendor Intralot to offer digital wagering through GamBetDC, which launched in May 2020 but fell short of revenue projections.

Earlier this year, OLG allowed Intralot to subcontract sports betting to FanDuel. In its first full month of digital wagering in DC, FanDuel set records for handle and revenue, generating $486,071 in tax revenue for the city in May.

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