- Betr found to meet criteria for untethered Category 3 online sports betting license
- Betr, FanDuel, and Bally Bet have met licensing criteria
- Massachusetts Gaming Commission will vote on license applications beginning Jan. 18
Betr, a sports betting operator specializing in micro-betting, met criteria for an untethered Massachusetts online sports betting license, according to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission.
Betr, and its President Jake Paul, faced extensive questioning from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission about its responsible gaming strategies and allegations against Paul, including several sexual assault incidents.
Betr’s application will be voted on by the commission beginning Jan. 18. It’s the third operator, joining Bally Bet and FanDuel Sportsbook Massachusetts, as those meeting licensing criteria.
Suitability Issues and Jake Paul at Heart of Meeting
While the commission agreed that Betr met or exceeded criteria for a license, Massachusetts Gaming Commissioners Nakisha Skinner and Eileen O’Brien both said they would wait for more information on open legal issues involving the operator and Paul.
Paul, a professional boxer and social media giant, was at the center of many of the commissioners questions on the Betr application. At one point during the hearing, Paul was asked to address several sexual assault allegations that have cropped up against him, his role in a cryptocurrency controversy, an incident involving a rental home he allegedly vandalized in 2018, and an incident at a George Floyd demonstration in Phoenix where he was accused of looting a mall.
Paul addressed the incidents one by one, as much as he was allowed by his legal counsel in public session, and noted he had never been charged with a crime.
“I appreciate the commission for the opportunity to be heard on these matters and I appreciate this entire process,” he said.
Concerns were also shared over Paul’s role as a professional boxer, a social media purveyor, and his fit as a Betr’s president. O’Brien said a great deal of his massive social media audience is likely under 21 years of age and are being primed for sports betting by some of his messages.
Betr has a social media compliance team of 10 full-time employees that monitor social media posts for compliance in real time, a company rep said, and imposes gaming-level standards on all its media content.
Paul’s role as a professional boxer, and also his interest in MMA, raised suitability concerns for Betr potentially accepting wagers on events he may be promoting or fighting in. Betr does not currently accepts bets on boxing or MMA, said Ashwin Krishnan, head of legal at Betr, but may look into the possibility in the future.
If Betr does decide to accept bets on combat sports, Krishnan said, it would not accept bets on events Paul promotes or participates in.
“If there is any conflict of interest, we will not go near it,” Paul said.
Betr Lays Out Responsible Gaming Strategies, DEI Plans
Betr currently has four open applications for sports betting licenses throughout the country, Betr Founder Joey Levy said, and recently took its first bets in Ohio during the state’s sports launch on Jan. 1. It currently accepts microbets, such as on the result of certain plays or drives, on NBA, NFL, MLB, NCAAB, and NCAAF events.
“U.S. sports features a very stop and start cadence, there’s a lot of scoring, lot of speculation of superstar players and what they do next…We think that micro and in-play betting may ultimately emerge as the predominant way to bet on sports in this country,” Levy said.
Betr has amassed over 900,000 followers across all of its platforms since launching in August 2022.
More than 55% of Betr employees are racial, ethnic, or gender minorities, 41% of Betr’s full-time employees are racial or ethnic minorities, and 19% of Betr’s full-time employees are gender minorities, according to the company.
In an effort to limit problem gaming, Betr does not allow credit card funding of its user accounts (though credit card funding is currently prohibited in Massachusetts) and places deposit limits on users 21 to 25 years of age, Levy said.
DraftKings Up Next
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission will march on with its application hearings, as DraftKings will appear before the commissioners tomorrow at 10 a.m.
DraftKings Sportsbook Massachusetts hopes to join Betr, FanDuel, and Bally Bet as online sports betting operators that have met criteria for an untethered Category 3 online sports betting license.