Newgioco lands tribal sports betting deal in Montana

8 April 2019

Betting technology supplier Newgioco Group has agreed a multi-year deal to provide its ELYS sports betting platform to the Chippewa Cree Tribe and its Northern Winz Casino in Montana.

Sports wagering is not yet legal in the US state, but existing tribal laws enable recognised tribes to offer gambling services including sports betting.

Consumers in Montana will now be able to place legal wagers on a wide range of sports event at the Northern Winz Casino in Box Elder.

“Newgioco’s management team worked closely with our representatives for several months and demonstrated a considerable shared-vision to help our council fully understand the unique aspects and risks of this new business line for our community,” Northern Winz Casino general manager, Raymond Parker, said.

“They were the only betting provider we found that dedicated a team of experts to quickly customise an indigenous game offering for tribal casino operators.”

Newgioco CEO, Michele Ciavarella, added: “While we await a decision on sports betting in Montana and many other states, this united partnership with the Chippewa Cree allows us to pioneer a unique library of Class 1 indigenous games so that tribal casino patrons can bet on their favorite games in safe, regulated environment.

“The agreement with Chippewa Cree aligns with our core business of connecting with our clients by creating innovative tribal focused betting solutions through our ELYS platform and the many advantages this partnership can offer to the tribal gaming community as a whole.”

Last week, Montana took a step closer to legalising sports wagering on a wider scale when three bills progressed further through the state legislature. Two of the three bills have been passed by the House and transferred to the Senate, while one was approved by the Senate and transferred to the House.

Each of the three proposes a different regulatory model for sports betting, with SB330 - also known as the Montana Sports Betting Act - aiming to permit land-based and online wagering. However, it requires that all online players register in-person, either by travelling to a land-based casino or by registering via a licensee’s interactive platform while on premises.

HB725, the Sports Wagering Lottery Amendment Act of 2019, aims to make the Montana Lottery the sole sports betting operator in the state. The lottery would be able to operate online and land-based offerings, although no tax rate is set out in the bill.

HB475 only aims to legalise pari-mutuel wagering in Montana, which it proposes should be overseen by the state’s Board of Horse Racing. Licensed racetracks would be able to offer pari-mutuel wagering at premises, at off-track betting facilities and online.

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