Mar 8, 2024 - Sports

5 things to know about mobile sports betting in North Carolina

Gov. Roy Cooper signed HB347 into law legalizing mobile sports betting at Spectrum Center in Uptown last June. Photo: Ashley Mahoney/Axios

Gov. Roy Cooper signed HB347 into law legalizing mobile sports betting at Spectrum Center in Uptown on June 14, 2023. Photo: Ashley Mahoney/Axios

North Carolina's legal mobile sports betting era arrives Monday, March 11.

Why it matters: Gambling isn't new in North Carolina, but legalization of mobile sports betting allows the state to generate additional revenue and establish safeguards around it.

Catch up quick: Gov. Roy Cooper signed House Bill 347: Sports Wagering/Horse Racing Wagering into law last June. The law gave the North Carolina State Lottery Commission a year to establish parameters around sports betting before setting a start date.

By the numbers: Operators will be taxed 18%, and the first 12 months of legal mobile sports betting in North Carolina are expected to generate around $130 million in tax revenue for the state, BetCarolina.com reporter Steve Bittenbender tells Axios.

Between the lines: These days, mobile sports betting ads line Charlotte's highways and flood your phone as you scroll on social media.

  • "You're going to be bombarded with more gambling ads than you've ever seen in your life," David Bockino, says Elon University media analytics program director and sport management professor.

The bottom line: Mobile sports betting will generate economic benefit and jobs for the state, Elon sport management professor Bill Squadron tells Axios.

  • Tax proceeds will fund youth sports, the NC Department of Health and Human Services, plus North Carolina universities.

There's a lot to unpack heading into Monday. Here are five things to know before mobile sports betting goes live:

When can you place your first bet

Monday at noon, just in time for college basketball tournaments, like the NCAA and ACC tournaments.

  • You can create an account with a licensed operator and deposit funds into said account from your electronic device now.
  • You must be at least 21 years old and physically in the state.

What you can bet on

Professional, college, electronic and Olympic sports, starting Monday.

Who can you bet with

Eight companies have received operator licenses from the commission: FanDuel, BETMGM, DraftKings, Fanatics, bet365, ESPN BET, Underdog Sports Wagering and Tribal Casino Gaming Enterprise of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.

Deals

Operators are offering incentives, mostly known as bonus bets to attract customers. Just like other industries, operators want to establish brand loyalty and they're essentially giving you free money — but you have to spend it with them.

A few examples include:

BETMGM: New customers get $200 in bonus bets when they preregister. No deposit required. Bonus bets expire a week after mobile sports betting goes live.

FanDuel: They're offering up to $300 in bonus bets. Customers get $100 in bonus bets if they sign up before March 11. Plus fans have a chance to win two VIP tickets to the Carolina Panthers season opener later this year. The team announced FanDuel as a sponsor earlier this week.

  • Fans receive $200 in bonus bets after depositing $10 and bet a minimum of $5 after the launch. Bonus bets expire a week after they are received.

Addiction

People were gambling illegally prior to the 2018 U.S. Supreme Court ruling opening the door for legal sports betting. With the ease of accessibility and aggressive marketing, experts are concerned about users becoming addicted to sports gambling.

  • "There's an obligation that betting operators have to cut off problem gamblers and I think that the regulators need to enforce that as strictly as they can," says Squadron, the Elon professor.
  • The state has allocated $2 million toward treating problem gambling in North Carolina through the DHHS.
  • NC Problem Gambling Program's helpline is 877-718-5543.
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