Oregon Switching Sports Betting App to DraftKings Sportsbook
DraftKings is officially coming to Oregon.
During a Commission Meeting on Thursday, the Oregon Lottery unanimously approved switching its sports betting app from the SBTech Scoreboard app to the popular DraftKings sportsbook.
Oregon sports betting has been a “single-source” operation with the state lottery using the Scoreboard app in junction with SBTech. Recently, SBTech merged into DraftKings as a result of the operator’s combination with SPAC Diamond Eagle last year. The plan since the merger was for the Scoreboard app to transition to the DraftKings platform.
As part of the deal, DraftKings will cease daily fantasy sports in Oregon. The move is seen as an obvious concession to authorities in a state where the legality of DFS has been debated.
Switch Could Come Soon
The Lottery didn’t specify a date for when the switch to DraftKings could take place, but it’s clear there is an emphasis to capitalize on the upcoming NFL betting and NBA betting seasons.
The NFL annually generates some of the highest monthly handles across the country, and with the Portland Trail Blazers and the rest of the NBA also in full swing from the fall through June, sports betting typically generates the most interest when those two leagues are playing.
“One of the factors we’re going to have to work on soon is how to fit a transition from one platform to the other, while still heading into a busy season of professional sports,” Oregon Lottery Directory Barry Pack said during the session. “Both NFL and NBA are coming up here really soon. We want to make sure that we’re able to seize the right window when we have enough information to know what it’s going to take, and how long it’s going to take to make the transition work."
The change to DraftKings means that current users with a Scoreboard account need to register and sign up for DraftKings to continue wagering on sports in Oregon. Pack cited the need for players to re-establish banking information from one platform to another when asked by Chairwoman MardiLyn Saathoff why the new registration was necessary.
“I don’t know,” Pack told her. “I don’t have the right people on the team to explain this better, but it is about just physically moving the bank accounts and re-establishing banking, I think, in the new platform.
“It’s not something that can just get transported over and things like that, I believe.”
Oregon Sports Betting Behind Other States
The current Oregon sports betting system has some limitations. For instance, the lottery doesn’t allow for wagering on college sports. The single-source option also limits the amount of betting options for players and fails to create a competitive sports wagering market.
In June, Oregon reported a sports betting handle of nearly $25 million. The state has 4.2 million people, making it the 27th-most populated state in the country. By comparison, other states of similar size are producing higher handles, because of diverse sports betting markets.
Iowa, No. 32 in population with 3.2 million, saw a sports betting handle of $111.2 million, more than four times Oregon’s June reported total.
Colorado has a population 38% higher than Oregon and features multiple operators in a robust mobile sports betting market. For June, Colorado reported $249 million in handle, about 10 times higher than Oregon.
A change to DraftKings could boost handle in Oregon, given the operator consistently features plenty of wagers across a wide range of sports for its players. There will be the question of how many users will be willing to register and create a new account on a different platform, but Pack believes it won’t be an issue.
“We may see some players who choose not to make that transition,” he said, “but I think that will probably be offset by the improved customer experience and the additional wagering options that the DraftKings platform will offer.
“The DraftKings platform is a lot more familiar to regular U.S. sports bettors. The SBTech platform was more of a European design.”
Now, the Oregon Lottery and DraftKings will work on negotiating a contract. Once the two parties agree to terms and sign the contract, the DraftKings transition in Oregon may begin.
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