Evolution Gaming to Supply DraftKings

By Ben Hamill - January 29 2019

Evolution Gaming to Supply DraftKings

Live dealer casino king Evolution Gaming has teamed up with another member of iGaming royalty, DraftKings, in an all-new venture. The pair will soon begin to expand DraftKings’ online gambling offerings with a fresh range of live-streamed titles.

This week, Sweden-based Evolution revealed that it has signed a deal to supply daily fantasy sports expert DraftKings with live products from the supplier’s live casino studio in Atlantic City. Evolution’s Atlantic City studio already provides similar services to some of New Jersey’s largest licensed iGaming operators.

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No Launch Date Revealed Yet

DraftKings, which until recently operated purely in the DFS sphere, has now grown into a leading sports betting operator in a number of US states that have legalized the practice. The firm was also the first operator of its kind to offer online wagering in NJ. Late last year, the operator’s New Jersey website introduced its very first casino offerings, marking the company’s very first foray into the world of table games and slots.

The recent announcement of the deal gave no clue as to when the DFS giant’s live casino offerings may launch. Similarly, Chief Business Officer of Evolution, James Stern, only said that his company is looking forward to working with DraftKings on the project, and gave no hints about the upcoming launch date itself.

Evolution opened its NJ studios in August last year with the goal to serve numerous US intrastate iGaming markets, including that of Pennsylvania. However, these plans have now been cast into uncertainty following the Department of Justice’s new stance that the 1961 Wire Act should apply to all forms of online gaming, not just sports betting.

READ MORE: PA’s iPoker Scene Tossed Into Uncertainty

DOJ Casts Doubt on Operations

Late last week, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board notified its online licensees that it was crucial that their digital offerings did not extend past the state’s borders. This data would include, among other things, any signals beamed in to Pennsylvania from Evolution’s studio in Atlantic City.

The DOJ was also quick to reveal a 90-day delay after which it would enforce its new opinion on the Wire Act. The period has given operators a chance to bring their businesses in line with new compliance rules. New Jersey lawmakers are already planning to use the delay to mount a legal case against the move, and also aim to seek declaratory judgement that the DOJ is contravening the Act’s original intent.

With all of this turmoil on the horizon, it should be noted that there is also great news afoot for Evolution. The live casino expert recently completed its purchase of major live dealer rival Ezugi, paying $12m upfront plus a maximum top-up of $6m in the deal. The acquisition is expected to increase Evolution’s 2019 revenues by as much as 4%.

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