Puerto Rico – Sports betting expansion underway with new licensesBy James - 7 November 2022
The Puerto Rico Gaming Commission has given seven companies the green light to expand the current sports betting offer, according to the interim executive director of the agency, Jaime Rivera Emmanuelli. The Commission approved the recommendation to grant licenses to three operating companies and another four service providers. Five of them are temporary licenses according to the official.
The authorization was granted after an evaluation of the profile, trajectory, compliance with tax responsibilities and financial statements of the applicants, as well as the technical and financial capacities of the companies and their shareholders and main officers.
Rivera explained that the licenses correspond to three operators, three service suppliers, and a technology provider that will facilitate the use of betting machines. The bets primarily involve sporting events in and outside of Puerto Rico, but can also include special authorized events.
Ballers Puerto Rico Sportsbook LLC, Liberman Media Group Gaming LLC (LMG), and CCHPR Hospitality, LLC (Casino Metro) received operator licenses. Services provider licenses went to Continent 8 Technologies PR LLC and technology platform provider Caesars Digital PR, Inc. All five of those companies received temporary licenses. Meanwhile service providers Swish Analytics Puerto Rico Inc. and US Integrity Inc. received permanent licenses.
“The sports betting industry is growing, under the regulations and supervision of the Puerto Rico Gaming Commission. Electronic betting has the potential to be an important source of jobs and the creation of commercial spaces for entertainment. In the same way, it will generate new income for the treasury”, said Rivera Emmanuelli.
The Secretary of Economic Development and Commerce, who also chairs the Commission, Manuel Cidre Miranda, welcomed this new opportunity and stated that it will represent an important injection into the economy of Puerto Rico.
Under current rules only landbased sports betting is permitted but Rivera Emmanuelli said that that the Commission was looking at allowing for an online expansion.
The Betting Committee Act of the Government of Puerto Rico was signed into law in July 2019 and allows for both new large scale sports betting operations and smaller establishments. Bets may be placed at any place authorised by the Commission, such as casinos, racetracks, hotels and hostels, amongst other locations.
The Act regulated sports betting and created The Puerto Rico Gaming Commission. It also set out a government policy for both landbased and online gaming, including sports betting, electronic game leagues and fantasy contests
In November 2021 Puerto Rico’s Gaming Commission announced that it had submitted Sports Betting Regulation Number 9316 and Fantasy Contest Regulation Number 9317 to the State Department. Both bills went into effect that same month. As a result of the two new regulations the commission announced that it would be authorized to begin the evaluation processes for those wanting to offer sportsbetting and fantasy sports on November 22.
In September 2021 MGM and Casino del Mar at La Concha Resort announced that they had agreed to a deal that would see BetMGM open a sportsbook at the resort’s casino as well as offer online sports wagering across the island. If its licence was approved, BetMGM said it would expand its retail and mobile sports betting offerings to Puerto Rico, signifying the company’s first market access agreement outside of the U.S. mainland.