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Fanatics Enters Sports Betting With a Sportsbook at the Commanders’ FedExFieldBy Jeff Osienya Jan 26, 2023 IndustryRenown sports apparel brand Fanatics breaks ground in the US sports wagering scene with an in-stadium sportsbook at FedExField, home of NFL’s Washington Commanders. The Fanatics gaming division is making more moves to expand its presence countrywide.
Fanatics, a brand perhaps best known for its sportswear and sports merchandise, has opened a sportsbook inside the Washington Commanders’ FedExField in Maryland.
The sportsbook is the newest in-stadia wagering facility on the grounds of a professional sports team. It all started when William Hill unveiled a temporary sportsbook at Capital One Arena, home of The Capitals hockey team, in 2020. Come 2022, BetMGM also debuted NFL’s first sportsbook at Arizona Cardinal’s State Farm Stadium. Similarly, Caesars also inked a deal with NBA’s Cavaliers to open a sportsbook at the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.
This landmark move marks Fanatics’ inauguration into the sports wagering market and its debut in the Old-Line state of Maryland. The Commanders also inked a deal with the Fanatics sportsbook brand to be its chief marketing access partner.
The first official wager was placed on January 20, 2023, by Chris Bryant, the Commanders’ fan of the year 2022. The superfan wagered on a series of games involving the NBA’s Washington Wizards and the NHL’s Washington Capital with a $20 parlay with +167 odds. Should his predictions be successful, Bryant will bag a $52.40 payout.
No In-person Wagering During Commanders Home Matches
The Fanatics Sportsbook will be open seven days a week from 10 am to midnight and will be accessed through Gate H, located near Garett Morgan Road and FedEx Way. The only days the sportsbook will not accept in-person wagers will be during the Washington Commander’s home games to comply with the NFL’s policy on commercial gambling.
This sportsbook features 5,000 square feet of space, eight wagering windows, 21 self-service kiosks, 38 HD television screens, and a restaurant. In case you were wondering, it offers legal sports betting markets on all sports, and not just NFL alone.
Responsible gambling is a key tenet of the Fanatics brand; as such, all the staffers have received responsible gambling training. Therefore, if the need arises, they will cater to any customer showing signs of irresponsible gambling. This approach goes hand-in-hand with the Commanders’ ‘Have a Game Plan’ initiative with the American Gaming Association (AGA), which promotes responsible gambling.
Fanatics Betting and Gaming chief Business officer, Ali Borod, expressed optimism about the new facility’s impact on Fanatics’ larger role in the North American gambling scene. He said:Quote
“Our first retail location with adjacency to the commander's Team Store is a physical representation of what Fanatics will deliver to sports fans all over North America. We are rolling out our platform first at retail, and we will have more exciting news to share in the coming months as we bring to market new mobile technology designed to improve the betting experience for sports fans.”
New Opportunities for Fanatics and the Commanders Team
Following Maryland’s passage of sports betting law in the 2020 ballot, professional sports stadiums and arenas were allowed to apply for sportsbooks licenses. With Fanatics' latest move, the in-stadium sportsbook is expected to feature as a vital marketing tool to access new bettors, especially with the stadium attracting thousands of match-goers each gameday. As such, the number of new sign-ups in the retail sportsbook is expected to be significant.
The benefits, of course, go both ways, with the Commanders expected to enjoy the perks of having a retail sportsbook facility within their stadium. For instance, Fanatics has provided the Commanders the opportunity to work with the Maryland-Certified Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) and Hamilton Hall Real Estate Partners.
Speaking on the sportsbook debut, the Washington Commanders Team President expressed delight in the newfound partnership with Fanatics, stating:Quote
“When our journey began over two years ago, we knew we had to reinvigorate the guest experience at FedExField and open the campus to the community. Today is a special moment in realizing that vision as we open this innovative sportsbook, operating seven days a week for sports fans throughout our community.”
He further went on to thank the powers that be, including former Governor Hogan and the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency, for making legal sports wagering a reality.
Fanatics is Slowly Gaining Ground in the US
Fanatics has long made it clear of its intentions to dive into the sports gambling world. The interest was first clear when it filed two trademarks to the US Patent and Trademark Office for its gambling platform dubbed BetFanatics.
The business then threw its cards on the table in the race to acquire a wagering license in the Empire State, New York. Since then, the US sports apparel supplier has made major hires to its betting and gaming division as it prepares to take its space in the gambling sector.
Besides operating in Maryland, Fanatics also holds wagering licenses in Massachusetts, Maryland, and Ohio. The company has also recently announced that it intends to use Amelco’s source power code to power its sports betting product.
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